VMware, Inc. (NYSE:VMW) and Deutsche Telekom have announced the companies are collaborating on an open and intelligent virtual RAN (vRAN) platform, based on O-RAN standards, to bring agility to radio access networks (RANs) for both existing LTE and future 5G networks, the companies said.
The solution, architected by VMware and Intel and based on Intel´s FlexRAN architecture, is planned to undergo testing and validation at Deutsche Telekom´s Bonn, Germany, headquarters.
While the majority of network modernization efforts start with virtualization of the core network, service providers are beginning to set their sights on realizing the benefits of end-to-end network transformation and are working to virtualize all parts of their network, including the RAN. Moving to an open vRAN helps create a more innovative RAN environment that introduces cloud economics in the radio access network environment — an essential component to delivering apps and services over a 5G network.
The Open RAN solution architecture leverages standards-based Intel processors and FlexRAN, a vRAN software reference platform, to run vRAN workloads on top of VMware´s telco cloud platform, optimized for real-time and low latency workloads.
The solution will also feature a VMware-developed pre-standard, near-real-time RAN Intelligent Controller (RIC) that will adopt O-RAN open interfaces with required enhancements to enable real-time radio resource management capabilities to be delivered as applications on top of the platform. VMware, Deutsche Telekom and Intel are collaborating with an open partner ecosystem to develop this solution, and key initial partners include Cohere Technologies and Mavenir.
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