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As programmability expands from the core to the RAN, 2020 will be a tipping point

According to Neeraj Patel, senior VP and GM of Software & Services at Radisys, RAN is “the most complex piece in the telecom maze.”

The RAN, radio access network, provides a connection between a device and the core network, and the initiative to develop virtualized and open RAN (O-RAN) architectures has the potential to majorly disrupt the vendor landscape by creating open interfaces, platforms and ecosystems.

“The open RAN […] initiative [is being]driven by the operators globally. It is all about open interfaces, open architecture, open APIs, open hardware and software,” Patel explained at Mobile World Congress Los Angeles.

“But why?” Patel then asked. Why the push for a more open ecosystem?

“You have these operators that have come together and are creating a lot of momentum globally behind this initiative to see how do we actually take RAN and get it from its monolithic box and break it into disaggregated elements with multi-vendors coming in for white box hardware, software-defined components […] and then adding layers in. This is where a lot of the work is going on today.”

He added that operators want to know how to make open RAN programmable, scalable and manageable. “These are various elements that are coming together as part of this entire open RAN initiative,” he continued.

Patel also stated that open RAN will allow for “an entire ecosystem of different vendors.”

For Radisys’ part, Patel said the company is committed to enabling open solutions. “This lets you pick and choose different elements. Different vendors can say, ‘Hey I’m using this DU, and this CU, but how do these communicate?’ But if that interface is open, the architecture is open, the APIs are open, the hardware is open, the software is open, now you’re building a truly open network.”

RAN, Patel continued, allows an operator to have more choice about how to leverage spectrum efficiency and assets in terms of transport. Radisys is very active in the O-RAN Alliance. The company is also part of the Open Test and Integration Center (OTIC) initiative, launched this past September.

OTIC is a collaboration between numerous telecom players that focuses on multi-vendor interoperability and validation activities for realizing open RAN compliant disaggregated 5G access infrastructure.

OTIC aims to facilitate open source products and solutions to be functionally compliant to the specifications of the O-RAN Alliance, through verification, integration and testing of disaggregated RAN components and to deliver the desired architecture that supports a plug-n-play model.

Patel believes that 2020 will be “the tipping point” for Open RAN adoptions. “[Concepts of open RAN] are already in networks today, but we will see more mass adoption. The community is saying yes, we do want to see solutions that can be based on open RAN that are carrying live traffic. The principles of open RAN are not just being discussed in closed rooms. They can be seen in live networks, and we are seeing this globally,” Patel concluded.

Click here for more information on Radisys.

The post Radisys focused on building a ‘truly open’ network appeared first on RCR Wireless News.



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