Europe has been at the forefront of the network market. The Open RAN plays an essential role in this, as it is not only an opportunity for European providers and supply chains, but also to promote innovation and leadership over the network. In this regard, Vodafone and Nokia have agreed to work together on a fully compatible open radio access network (RAN) solution, marking an important milestone for the mobile industry and a major boost to Europe’s competitiveness. Combining Nokia’s advanced ReefShark System on Chip (SoC) technology, developed in cooperation with Marvell, with off-the-shelf (COTS) servers will enable the Open RAN system to achieve functionality and performance parity with traditional mobile radio networks. “Open RAN technology is transforming networks from pure communications systems to platforms for innovation. For this reason, we have led the technology, together with other related companies, for its live deployment. I am delighted to see Nokia’s commitment and I am sure that together we will keep the flow of innovation in Europe”, explains Johan Wibergh, Vodafone’s CTO.
Nokia is the first major Europe-based RAN equipment vendor to fully support Open RAN technology. This partnership with Nokia will help Vodafone meet its public target of having 30% of its European networks run on Open RAN by 2030, as well as boosting the EU’s global technology leadership in digital infrastructures.
Vodafone and Nokia partner to drive the Open RAN ecosystem in Europe
Early next year, Vodafone and Nokia aim to showcase an Open RAN baseband system that processes customers’ mobile traffic, using layer 1 inline acceleration, in a major step towards the wider adoption of Open RAN. . This solution will ultimately be deployed in conjunction with third-party COTS server providers, consistent with the industry vision of an open and secure ecosystem built around specifications developed by the industry body, the ORAN Alliance.
European R&D Center
Today’s announcement consolidates the opening by Vodafone, earlier this year, of the first European R&D center focused on the development of Open RAN networks. The center, located in the new Vodafone Digital Competence Hub in Malaga, focuses on establishing a strong ecosystem for Open RAN solutions in Europe.