Huawei launches OneStorage for carrier data flexibility

How new data storage design could enable more flexible service innovation.

Huawei launched new data storage solutions this week, designed to reduce the cost and complexity of data storage, and to help telecoms operators become more agile in how they can use stored data to iterate new services and applications.

Dr. Peter Zhou, President of Huawei IT Product Line, launched the OneStorage products in a press conference at Mobile World Congress Barcelona. Dr Zhou introduced four new hardware platforms, the OceanStor Dorado all-flash storage, OceanStar Pacific distributed storage, OceanProtect backup and FusionCube HCI. On top of that he outlined the capabilities of the OceanStor OS software which delivers data as resource pools to teco applications. Additionally, the new Data Management Engine manages the lifecycle of the data storage.

Huawei said that, using Telco OneStorage, carriers can build converged storage resource pools that are oriented to cloud, data center, and edge and support diversified hardware and multi-protocol interworking. That would enable rapid service iteration and innovation.

Carrier benefits

Dr Zhou outlined the benefits that Huawei’s new data storage products and architecture could bring to telecoms carriers.

“When I think about the benefits to carriers, I think that Telco OneStorage is exactly what they need to create a data infrastructure to fulfil digital transformation strategies. Today, if we look at the IT infrastructure in carriers, everything has got isolated – the billing, ERP, OSS and B2B data. Today, if data cannot flow from one to the other, then that makes doing business really difficult.

“We also understand that different business sectors need different QoS and performance from their storage platforms, so knowing how to balance cost and performance across different sectors is important.

“Thirdly, there is the question of evolving or connecting to the multi-cloud. Today, all carriers rely on private and public cloud for IT infrastructure, and to do business, so each IT infrastructure needs an open API to connect to multi-cloud. OneStorage has an open API to make sure data is connected to the private and public cloud to make everything easy when an operator adopts a cloud technology for its IT.”

Zhou said that meeting these requirements had resulted in how Huawei had designed its OneStorage solutions.

“Therefore we have the concept of OneStorage. Over the past years we have put effort and investment in to make sure that different types of storage can connect to each other, with resource pooling. We then deploy software on top of it to ensure operators can fulfil their missions with different levels of performance, so that data can flow between departments and enable more business for them.

“Finally we also integrated a lot of AI-based technologies to make sure O&M is autonomous. Many of our carrier friends really like this concept. In Indonesia, Thailand and China, once we implemented those kinds of systems, the carriers saw real TCO savings, and they proved the efficacy of the concept.”

Architectural evolution

Dr Zhou said that in the future, Huawei would develop a new architecture that would overcome the constraints placed on storage functionality by the way that CPUs currently connect to memory. With high performance data analytics functions, the connection between the data and the CPU becomes a bottleneck.

“The current architecture, known as the Von Neumann architecture, is CPU-centric rather than data-centric,” he said. “Huawei’s next step will be to adopt a data-centric architecture that regards the data in storage as data saved in memory, so read/write operations are very quick. That way the whole architecture is data-centric and more efficient. We believe that’s the direction for next generation storage. Progress is good and we hope we can deliver to the market around 2023.”