Cloudification will mean upheaval in telecoms. It will allow startups to challenge incumbent operators.

In the computing clouds, startups can set up new servers or acquire data storage with only a credit card and a few clicks of a mouse. Now imagine a world in which they could as quickly weave their own wireless network, perhaps to give users of a fleet of self-driving cars more bandwidth or to connect wireless sensors…

Cloudification may also create an opening for newcomers. Both Affirmed Networks and Mavenir, two American firms, for instance, are developing software to run networks on off-the-shelf servers. Affirmed already claims 50 customers. Mavenir wants to work with underdog operators “to bring the incumbents down”, says Pardeep Kohli, its chief executive. If the history of cloud computing is any guide, the telecoms world may also see the rise of new players in the mould of Amazon Web Services (AWS), the e-commerce giant’s fast-growing cloud-computing arm…

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