A report said that global network functions virtualisation (NFV) which includes hardware, software and services will generate revenues of $11.6 billion in 2019, from its existing revenue base of $2.3 billion.
IHS said that the additional revenues will be generated because operators want to shift from hardware to software, with NFV software representing over 80 percent of the revenues expected in 2019.
Michael Howard, a senior research director for carrier networks at IHS, said software is a much bigger investment than the server, storage and switch hardware.
The move to NFV is in its early stages, he said, with most carriers viewing a move to virtualised networks that will take 10 to 15 years.
He said that revenues from outsourced services for such projects will grow at an estimated 71 percent compound annual growth rate (CAGR) from now to 2019.