Beyond NFV to a Cloud Native Future – Emulating the global cloud providers to transform their companies from slow-moving, hardware and manual labour driven organizations into businesses that are software driven, fast moving and highly automated has been a consistent goal of the telecom industry’s leaders for at least the last ten years. What has changed in the last year or two is the sector’s assumptions about what specific application and network architectures, organizational structures and processes, tools and partnerships are needed to gain the full benefits of digital transformation. Increasingly, telcos recognize that while the end goals of digital transformation are as valid as ever, they need a new means of achieving those ends. What that new means consists of is a commitment by telcos to converge on the exact same ‘Cloud Native’ principles and tools that the public cloud providers have built out and that continues to drive their phenomenal success. Some investments made in the telecom sector’s own Network Functions Virtualization (NFV) ecosystem have generated marginal cost savings but none of the hoped-for gains in agility, automation or service velocity have materialized. Business customers have been able to buy cloud-based compute and storage in hours or minutes for many years – communications services still take days or weeks.