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Qualcomm and HPE collaborate over OpenRAN kit

US tech players Qualcomm and Hewlett Packard Enterprise are teaming up to make OpenRAN-optimised 5G virtualized distributed units.

There doesn’t seem to be any new technology involved in the collaboration, rather the bundling together of their relevant kit to make a complete vDU offering. Specifically Qualcomm is throwing its 5G DU X100 Accelerator Card (pictured) into the mix, together with HPE’s ProLiant DL110 Gen10 Plus Telco Server. The resulting thing is designed to make it easier and cheaper to build virtualized and OpenRAN base stations.

“We are excited for the opportunity to work with HPE to further the capabilities and efficiencies of 5G virtualized networks,” said Durga Malladi, GM of 5G, mobile broadband and infrastructure at Qualcomm. “Through our collaboration with HPE, we are able to deliver enhanced, powerful and reliable 5G experiences to consumers.”

“HPE is looking forward to collaborating with Qualcomm Technologies to help address the rigorous and ever-changing demands of 5G,” said Tom Craig, GM of HPE’s communications technology group. “Our industry-leading HPE carrier-grade infrastructure integrated with Qualcomm Technologies’ innovative technology will further benefit our customers as they expand the deployment of their 5G networks.”

The X100 card was launched at Mobile World Congress last summer, which explains why we’d never heard of it. Right now Intel seems to have a head start on OpenRAN silicon so it’s interesting to see HPE, which presumably has a decades-long relationship with Intel, give Qualcomm a try. We expect OpenRAN kit to be a major theme of MWC 2022 in a week or so.

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