open RAN

Eurobites: Vodafone et al put open RAN for 5G through its paces

Also in today's EMEA regional roundup: Deutsche Telekom, Ericsson and more trial 5G VoNR; Orange boss gets a grilling over network outage; OBS, Ericsson combine on IoT security.

  • Vodafone and friends – the friends in this case being Cohere Technologies, VMware, Capgemini Engineering, Intel and the Telecom Infra Project (TIP) – say they have successfully demonstrated how a new open RAN platform can boost the capacity of 5G where a number of customers are sharing the same cell site. In a test lab, the companies say they doubled capacity by using a programmable, AI-based RAN intelligent controller (RIC) supporting a mix of open RAN components from several vendors. The test deployed 5G multi-user MIMO (MU-MIMO) technology, which apportions bandwidth to individual users connected to the same mobile site, supporting the increasing demand for faster digital connections to deliver high-definition graphics, virtual reality and the like.

  • And in another 5G grouping, Deutsche Telekom, Ericsson, Nokia, Qualcomm, Samsung and Xiaomi have been trumpeting the successful completion of what they say is the world's first 5G voice-over-New-Radio (VoNR) call in an end-to-end multivendor environment. The trial, which took place in Warsaw, combined a 5G core from Ericsson with an IP multimedia subsystem (IMS) from Nokia. The calls were completed on commercial devices from Samsung and Xiaomi using a mobile test platform from Qualcomm.

  • Orange boss Stéphane Richard has been called for a meeting with the French Interior Minister, Gerald Darmanin, following Wednesday's major outage which prevented calls to the emergency services. As Reuters reports (paywall applies), the minister told a news briefing that the network failure was "serious and unacceptable," adding that one person in the Brittany region may have died because emergency services could not be called quickly enough.

  • Orange Business Services has added a new Ericsson IoT security service for enterprises to its product portfolio. Channeling Donald Rumsfeld, Threat Monitoring and Mitigation (TMM) detects "both known and unknown threats" to cellular IoT devices, says Ericsson, preventing the exfiltration of data or participation in a denial-of-service attack.

  • Finland's Nokia has landed an XGS-PON deal with SaskTel, a broadband provider in the Canadian province of Saskatchewan. Nokia's technology will support faster broadband speeds and SaskTel's delivery of its maxTV and maxTV Stream video products and its Optimum In-home Wi-Fi service, initially in the communities of Regina and Saskatoon.

  • The BEUC, a European consumer rights group, has lent its backing to the European Commission's investigation of Apple's use of its App Store to unfairly promote its music streaming service ahead of its rivals, most notably Sweden's Spotify. Monique Goyens, the BEUC's director general, said: "We look forward to working with the Commission to ensure that Europe's consumers have access to a full range of music streaming services without their choices being unfairly restricted or prices being artificially inflated."

  • BT has upgraded its "street hubs" – sort of 2-D information kiosks-cum-Wi-Fi hotspots which crop up on some of Britain's high streets – by giving them a "more sustainable" design, adding environment monitoring capabilities and the ability to boost 4G/5G mobile coverage. BT hopes to roll out more than 200 "Street Hub 2.0" units to new sites across the UK over the next year.

    — Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe, Light Reading

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