Ericsson tiptoes towards OpenRAN with new Open Lab

Swedish kit vendor Ericsson has unveiled an Open Lab, which is designed as a hub for collaboration on virtualized 5G RAN technologies.

The physical lab is co-located with the company’s Cloud RAN R&D site in Ottawa but, appropriately enough, it’s also a virtual space for CSPs and other RAN stakeholders to get together and chuck ideas around. The initial focus is on Ericsson’s own Cloud RAN products but, as it’s increasingly inclined to do, Ericsson stressed that it’s got no problem with people chatting about OpenRAN in general there.

“Open technology underpins the modern mobile miracle, which connects more than eight billion devices today with one set of global operating standards,” said Fredrik Jejdling, Ericsson’s Head of Business Area Networks. “With Ericsson Open Lab, we invite our customers and partners to co-create and bring new cloud innovations to 5G.

“We have created this collaboration to develop architectures and common operating standards that complement existing 5G ready technology. This initiative will help to test the limits of 5G connectivity, working closely with operators and enterprise customers globally, as the industry continues to adopt more open architectures.”

For those who make the effort to visit the site once we’re allowed to leave the house gain, they will be rewarded with 100MHz of indoor mid-band spectrum and 60MHz of indoor/outdoor mid-band spectrum to play around with. Here’s a couple of canned quotes from CSPs that are planning to get involved.

“Working with Ericsson in the Open Lab will enable our design and engineering teams to collaborate in real-time and co-develop new virtualized RAN technologies to accelerate the intelligence and agility of our 5G networks,” said Toshikazu Yokai, Chief Director of Mobile Technology at KDDI

“In the Open RAN journey, interoperability, cloudification and automation are key topics for Orange,” said Arnaud Vamparys, SVP of Radio Networks at ‎Orange. “The collaboration with Ericsson, as part of the Open Lab initiative, is allowing us to explore new flexible and innovative technologies like Cloud RAN on COTS hardware for mobile network evolution.”

So Ericsson’s tightrope walk over OpenRAN continues. While it knows it can’t be ignored, especially with US politicians deciding it’s the answer to all their geopolitical problems, Ericsson would far rather CSPs stuck with the kind of closed RAN solutions its business model is founded on. The tricky balance is to show just enough acceptance of OpenRAN without giving its customers too many funny ideas and this lab seems designed to do just that.

  • Private Networks in a 5G World

  • 5G Networking Digital Symposium

  • LIVE: Getting the Best out of 5G

  • 5G Ecosystem Digital Symposium

  • 2020 Vision Executive Summit

  • TechXLR8

  • BIG 5G Event

  • 5G World

  • 5G Latin America

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.