OpenRAN provides operators with open, standards-based, and interoperable software and hardware. This gives carriers more flexibility in their deployments, reduces cost, and improves the resilience of networks.
The joint trial between O2 and NEC used virtualised RAN software from Altiostar in addition to hardware from GigaTera Communications, Supermicro, and others.
Derek McManus, COO of O2, said:
“The partnership between NEC and O2 promises to accelerate the provision and growth of OpenRAN solutions in the UK.
O2 will continue to transform our network through collaboration and the optimisation of new technologies such as OpenRAN.”
The trial used O2’s core network and was conducted at NEC’s recently-established Center of Excellence in the UK.
Mayuko Tatewaki, General Manager of the Service Provider Solutions Division at NEC Corporation, commented:
“We are extremely excited to be driving this journey on the home ground of our OpenRAN Center of Excellence in the UK.
Through close collaboration with O2, we are honoured to contribute to the diversification and innovation of network transformation.”
NEC created a custom OpenRAN architecture for the trial which was optimised for O2’s network. The system’s performance was described as “solid” and included end-to-end testing and interoperability verification.
O2 owner Telefonica plans to build on its success with OpenRAN trials in the UK with similar tests for its 4G and 5G networks in other markets it operates including Germany, Spain, and Brazil.
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