Intel and VMware Extend Virtualization to Radio Access Network for 5G

Intel and VMware announced a collaboration on an integrated software platform for virtualized radio access networks (RAN) to accelerate the rollout of both existing LTE and future 5G networks.

As communications service providers (CoSPs) evolve their networks to support the rollout of future 5G networks, they are increasingly adopting a software-defined, virtualized infrastructure. Virtualization of the core network enables CoSPs to improve operational costs and bring services to market faster.

Intel and VMware will work with a rich ecosystem, including telecom equipment manufacturers, original equipment manufacturers and RAN software vendors, to help CoSPs more easily build on top of the vRAN platform to address specific use cases. As part of this effort, Intel and VMware will collaborate in building programmable open interfaces that leverage Intel’s FlexRAN software reference architecture and a VMware RAN Intelligent Controller (RIC), to enable development of innovative radio network functions using AI/ML learning for real time resource management, traffic steering and dynamic slicing. This in turn will assist in optimized QoE for rollout of new 5G vertical use cases.

“Many CoSPs are choosing to extend the benefits of network virtualization into the RAN for increased agility as they roll out new 5G services, but the software integration can be rather complex. With the integrated vRAN platform, combined with leading technology and expertise from Intel and VMware, CoSPs are positioned to benefit from accelerated time to deployment of innovative services at the edge of their network,” said Dan Rodriguez, corporate vice president and general manager of the Network Platforms Group at Intel.

“CoSPs around the globe rely on VMware’s Telco Cloud platform to deploy and manage myriad core network functions. As they look to extend their software-defined infrastructure out to the RAN, there are tremendous benefits to delivering all network functions on a single platform,” said Shekar Ayyar, executive vice president and general manager, Telco and Edge Cloud, VMware. “With an integrated platform, CoSPs will be able to deploy new network functions across the same Telco Cloud architecture, from core to RAN, enabling the scale and agility needed to deliver services across a 5G network more efficiently.”



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