Two major telecoms industry associations have decided to align their API standards to ensure they remain open and widely interoperable.

Both organizations get involved in developing APIs to improve software interoperability within the ecosystems they serve. MEF specializes in metro ethernet and it adapted a TM Forum open API to better meet its members needs. This thing is TMF was still developing its version too, so a dreaded forking of the standard threatened.

To their credit the respective CTOs, George Glass of TMF and Pascal Menezes of MEF, got together at the start of this year and resolved to resolve this fork. Nine months later they gave birth to a set of aligned APIs that apparently reconcile the needs of all concerned. In these polarized times credit goes to the two groups for believing in compromise and now they’ve set template for resolving future forks.

“CSPs are clear that B2B services will be critical to the success of 5G,” said Glass. “This requires CSPs to offer enterprises access to complex solutions to business challenges. CSPs cannot do this on their own, so building out ecosystems of partners to meet the myriad needs of enterprises is essential.”

“Open APIs are an important part of integrating partner capabilities and enabling CSPs to establish, operate and monetize platform-based business models. Both MEF and TM Forum recognized that bringing our APIs into alignment was for the good of the industry.”

“API alignment between MEF and TM Forum paves the way for members of both industry organizations to federate with confidence, and will accelerate service delivery across multiple providers,” said Menezes. “Automation of inter-provider services – with currently available and planned LSO APIs – ultimately opens up opportunities to offer enterprise customers on-demand, dynamic connectivity with coveted global reach.”

Just like everyone else, TMF has been forced to convert its annual get together to a digital event, which kicked off today. The usual impressive array of industry luminaries were assembled nonetheless, and there was plenty more talk of collaboration and that sort of thing. Hopefully everyone will still go out drinking afterwards, if only to keep in training for when we’re all allowed to meet up in person again.



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