In a rare case of coming of age, the technology titans including Finnish telecoms gear maker Nokia Google Cloud, Microsoft, and Amazon have announced their partnership for developing 5G solutions. “Open collaboration is key to the development of new and innovative high-value 5G use cases that will equip our customers with the tools they need for digital transformation,” Tomi Uitto, Nokia President of Mobile Networks said.
As part of the partnership plan Nokia and Google will collaborate in joint solutions by combining Nokia's Radio Access Network (RAN), Open RAN, and Cloud RAN (vRAN), and edge cloud technologies with Google's edge computing platform and applications ecosystem.
The initial collaboration, which is already in progress at Nokia's Espoo headquarters, is focusing on Cloud RAN, which will integrate Nokia's 5G vDU and 5G vCU with Google's edge computing platform, running on Anthos. Nokia's 5G standalone network with vCU and 5G core will also be tested on the Google Cloud Anthos platform as a cloud-native deployment.
“This partnership with Nokia will combine both of our decades of mobile communications expertise to deliver new solutions that help CSPs enable business transformation at the network edge,” Bikash Koley, VP, Google Global Network and Head of Technology for Telecom Products at Google Cloud said.
According to Nokia, the company in partnership with Microsoft will develop market-ready 4G and 5G private wireless use cases designed for enterprises and will combine Nokia's Cloud RAN technologies with Microsoft Azure's cloud-based services and developer ecosystem.
The project, which will run in three stages, will see Nokia combine its mobile network solutions including Cloud RAN, Open RAN, Radio Access Controller (RIC), and multi-access edge cloud (MEC) with the Azure Private Edge Zone.
Nokia also plans to integrate its 5G RAN with Azure 4G/5G core to demonstrate interworking to support enterprise use cases required by Microsoft's customers. “Our collaboration with Nokia across multiple potential use cases, based on specific customer demand, will provide operators with choices on how the best adopt cloud technology in concert with their 5G updates to drive new revenue streams, reduce cost and future proof their network investment,” Yousef Khalidi, Corporate Vice President, Azure for Operators at Microsoft Corp said.
Further Nokia has partnered with Amazon Web Services (AWS) to research and enable Cloud RAN (vRAN) and Open RAN technologies to develop new customer-focused 5G solutions. The collaboration looks to develop innovative proof of concepts (PoC) regarding Cloud RAN and related technologies.
According to Nokia, the collaboration will cover three distinct areas–firstly, onboarding and validating Nokia's 5G vDU (virtualized distributed unit) on AWS Outposts using Amazon EKS; the second area will examine the implementation of Nokia's 5G vCU (virtualized centralized unit) with AWS Outposts, AWS Local Zones, using Amazon EKS; the third part of the collaboration will build a proof of concept for an end-to-end solution with Nokia's 5G Cloud RAN and 5G standalone Core network running on AWS.
As part of this collaboration, Nokia will run AWS EKS Anywhere on the Nokia AirFrame Open Edge server.
“This collaboration with Nokia will extend the reach of our industry-leading cloud technology to support our Telco and enterprise customers. We look forward to working closely on this collaboration and offer multiple deployment choices for customers to build 5G Cloud RAN and Open RAN solutions,” said Dave Brown, Vice President, Amazon EC2, AWS.