Network functions virtualization (NFV) is surrounded by hype, but the reality is that the move to virtualize certain elements of operator networks will be well underway in the 2016/2017 timeframe, according to speakers at this week's TM Forum Live conference in Nice, France. Yet speakers cautioned that NFV will be an incremental process rather than a "big bang," with some functions, such as the evolved packet core (EPC), being easily virtualized. A major issue is the development of standards, according to Ken Dilbeck, TM Forum vice president of strategy. He said the TM Forum supports a "fail fast" approach to at least start the process and see what will actually work. For more, see this FierceWireless:Europe article.