Displaying items by tag: Operators

Germany to hold 5G frequency auction

Written on Tuesday, 19 March 2019 06:18

Germany’s attempt to catch up with the digital era starts this week when the auction for airwaves to build ultra fast 5G wireless networks will begin.

This technology is crucial at the moment since Europe’s biggest economy seeks to transition from old-school engineering to catch up with the new digital age.

The country seems to be behind in the race of mobile network speeds compared to Qatar, Albania and Moldova.

Rubin Ritter, co-chief executive officer of Europe’s biggest online fashion retailer Zalando said, “Updating Germany’s digital infrastructure is very important. There are moments when customers have difficulties accessing our app.”

German Chancellor Angela Merkel and her government have promised to create new and advanced digital infrastructure. It expects an income worth around 5 billion Euros however the actual amount of the bill is difficult to predict at this moment in time.

They aim to allow family-owned manufacturers and corporate behemoths to digitize production processes and create data services.

The bidders comprise of current network operators such as Deutsche Telekom, Vodafone and Telefonica.

The auction starts on Tuesday and it comes with legal issues over the terms and conditions as well as pressure on the country’s government to Huawei equipment due to growing global security concerns.

On Friday, Huawei’s Western European chief told Business Daily Handelsblatt that they “would never build back doors into our devices or pass on data illegally.” He continued, “We would also be ready to sign a no-spy-agreement with the German government.”

5G technology guarantees super fast internet speed which is said to be able to download a full-length film in a matter of seconds.

The telecommunications industry, after experiencing a steady decline in share prices over the past few years, is hoping that this new technology will bring up new opportunities of communication such as holographic chats and potentially some fresh revenue streams into the industry.

Deutsche Telekom plans to invest 20 billion Euros in Germany over the next few years aiming to introduce high speed internet and 5G services. This investment levels caused many bidders to file lawsuits against the government’s conditions for the auction some of which included providing download speeds of 100 megabits per second to 98% of German homes, all highways and federal roads by the end of 2022.

A court eliminated the lawsuits so the auction can now carry on as planned.

“Driving with a car through Germany you lose your cellular connection every 5km. The network infrastructure we have right now in Germany is a big weakness,” said Stefan Brandl, chief executive officer of EBM-Papst.

Published in Telecom Operators

In advance of Mobile World Congress, Nokia today announces a raft of enhancements to its Anyhaul transport portfolio that help operators prepare their networks for 5G by delivering throughput speeds of up to 25 Gbps to base stations.

The launches span microwave, optical, IP and broadband technologies within a carrier Software Defined Networking (SDN) transport architecture. This simplifies the integration of transport with cloud-based radio access and core networks, thereby enabling an automated end-to-end 5G network slicing and service provisioning system.

Nokia Anyhaul is the industry's most extensive range of transport solutions. These solutions can be rapidly and dynamically provisioned to support the massive connectivity, extreme low latency and very high throughput demands of 5G services.

Programmability and automation dynamically create transport network slices to quickly and cost-effectively match diverse application and user needs with end-to-end service delivery guarantees.

The Nokia Anyhaul portfolio enables operators to deploy the optimal mix of transport technologies to create a flexible fabric that matches their unique network and business needs.

The new Nokia 1830 Versatile WDM Module (VWM) Translation Line Unit (TLU)-200 provides high density wavelength translation at 10 Gbps and 25 Gbps speeds. Purpose-built for Cloud RAN and Edge Cloud requirements, it simplifies operations and improves reliability of fronthaul connectivity for 4G Common Public Radio Interface (CPRI)/Open Base Station Architecture Initiative (OBSAI) and 5G eCPRI data.

A new, compact interconnect router, the Nokia 7250 IXR-e, is purpose-built to support 5G and edge cloud requirements at or near base stations with 1/10/25/100 GE interfaces. The 7250 IXR-e features a compact architecture with efficient cooling and optimized space efficiency for minimal installation costs. It complements the previously released 7250 IXR-R6, which also supports 5G requirements and 1/10/25/100 GE interfaces.

A proof of concept of Nokia Broadband Anyhaul 25G Passive Optical Network (PON) demonstrates the viability of building on existing fiber infrastructure to offer 25 Gbps speeds. Co-existing with 2.5G and 10G PON technologies, 25G PON enables more radio access sites to be connected on the same fiber to reduce costs.

Nokia has successfully trialed 25G PON proof of concept with T-1 operators in North America and Japan in January 2019.

Jimmy Yu, Vice President at Dell'Oro Group, said: "Mobile backhaul has always been done with a variety of transport technologies to balance the needs of performance, time, and economics. This will continue with 5G, and for this reason, operators will need an assortment of transport technologies-microwave, optical, IP and PON-that suit their unique requirements in 5G fronthaul and backhaul. The rollout of 5G has just started this year and if our predictions are correct, demand for 5G backhaul transport systems (not including fiber) will begin ramping in a year's time and surpass $1 billion of annual sales in the following two years."

Phil Twist, VP of Networks Marketing and Communications, at Nokia said: "Our Anyhaul portfolio is a key element of the Nokia 5G Future X architecture, which equips our customers to take advantage of the promise of this next generation of network technology. Nokia Anyhaul has been deployed globally and is now being selected in countries such as the US, Japan, China, and South Korea where we are helping the fast-movers transform to 5G. The expertise and invaluable best practices we gain will further simplify and reduce risk for other operators as they move to 5G."

Published in Telecom Vendors

The US-led campaign against Chinese telecommunications behemoth Huawei is now facing resistance from a number of major European operators.

Washington has been engaged in a sustained offensive attack on China’s major telecommunication vendors Huawei and ZTE over the last number of years.

However, that has heightened in recent months, with the United States labelling Huawei and ZTE as a severe threat to national security. US President Donald Trump is expected to issue an executive order later this week which would prohibit both Chinese vendors from being involved in wireless networks in the US.

In addition to this, lobbyists on behalf of the US convinced its allies Australia and New Zealand to prevent either company from participating in the rollout of their respective 5G networks. The US is now pressuring Europe to follow suit.  Earlier this week, comments by US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo added further fuel to the ongoing saga when he said that countries that use Huawei technology could hurt their relationship with the United States.

However, that has been met with resistance from major European operators who have discovered that they will have to fork out more to replace equipment from Huawei and ZTE, and that a blanket ban on both companies would significantly impact its ability to launch 5G services in the next twelve months, as Huawei is the global leader on 5G equipment.

A number of prominent executives from Europe’s top operators told The Wall Street Journal that Huawei hardware was much better than the rest on offer and often cost less; not using it could well mean that Europe would lag Asia and countries in other regions that use gear from Huawei for their 5G rollouts.

In addition to this, Nick Read, chief executive of Vodafone Group, was quoted as saying in January that a total ban on the carrier's use of Huawei equipment “would have significant financial cost, would have significant customer disruption and would delay 5G rollout in several countries”. The UK's four major wireless operators — Vodafone, BT Group, Telefonica and CK Hutchison Holdings' Three — were all against a ban.

But it is not only big carriers who prefer Huawei equipment, with Jersey Telecom, a publicly-owned company operating in the Isle of Jersey, also expressing a preference for Chinese equipment.

The company sought bids from both Chinese and Western companies in 2014 for its wireless network and while Huawei's bid 20% below the lowest Western offer, ZTE was 40% cheaper. Jersey Telecom chief executive Graeme Millar went with ZTE, and commented: "I have a genuinely high-class, low-cost supplier with ZTE, who haven’t let me down yet.”

The US stands accused of using Huawei and ZTE as political pawns in the ongoing trade war standoff between Washington and Beijing.

Published in Telecom Operators

In advance of Mobile World Congress, Nokia today launched off-the-shelf Internet of Things (IoT) packages to help operators win new business in vertical IoT markets.

In addition to enabling operators to achieve a fast time to market, the packages simplify the set-up and operations of enterprise IoT services.

Built on the Nokia Worldwide IoT Network Grid (WING) infrastructure that provides the necessary global IoT connectivity and services support, the applications include IoT sensors, user applications and business models suited to specific sectors. Nokia WING's managed service approach also offers a pay-as-you-grow business model, giving operators the flexibility to quickly scale up IoT services as required.

The new market-ready solutions for WING eliminate the challenges facing operators developing their own IoT services.

These include the need for specialized expertise, the complexities of combining fragmented IoT connectivity infrastructure and the risk and effort of setting up and working with multiple service providers globally. Nokia works with best-in-class partners on Nokia WING vertical applications portfolio and continues to develop the IoT ecosystem.

The four new solutions announced today by Nokia include:

  • Smart Agriculture as-a-Service: Sensors capture environmental, soil and crop data that is then analyzed to provide insights that help farmers manage crops more effectively, potentially saving costs on irrigation, pesticides and fertilizers.
  • Livestock Management as-a-Service: Tracking devices and biosensors monitor animal health and welfare to provide ranchers with early alerts if abnormalities are detected, protecting valuable livestock and improving yields.
  • Logistics as-a-Service: IoT sensors enable tracking of the global movement and condition of goods through the complete supply chain to help enterprises instantly identify incidents and even predict future events to optimize delivery and logistics process efficiency.
  • Asset Management as-a-Service: Connecting products anywhere in the world enables their status and performance to be monitored centrally, helping enterprises provide a better service to their business and consumer customers.

Nokia is trialing Agriculture as-a-Service with an African operator and working with a leading services and consulting firm on Asset Management as-a-Service to help them offer more advanced services.

Brian Partridge, Vice President, 451 Research, said: "Nokia addresses a wide spectrum of challenges through its WING IoT infrastructure-as-a-service so its early traction with customers isn't a surprise. Most telecom operators desire a more prominent role in the IoT value chain that builds upon secure and reliable domestic or global connectivity. Nokia's announced plans to offer end-to-end vertical applications on top of the WING global infrastructure is a logical next step. We believe that this approach benefits Nokia's WING telecom customers and the enterprises they serve in addition to vertical application partners who can benefit from WING's market scale and go-to market channels."

Ankur Bhan, Global Head of WING Business at Nokia, said: "The IoT is a growing opportunity for operators to win new enterprise customers and significant additional revenue in a diverse range of vertical markets. With minimal upfront investment, an operator can now quickly get a service to market and generate IoT revenues. We expect these vertical solutions to encourage more operators to connect to Nokia WING, expanding its global footprint and broadening the range of capabilities and services that will become available. We already have several more vertically-focused as-a-Service packages in the development pipeline."

Published in Telecom Vendors

GSMA expected to discuss Huawei issue at MWC

Written on Tuesday, 05 February 2019 08:27

The governing body that represents the world’s mobile operators is expected to discuss the ongoing issue of Chinese telecommunications vendor Huawei at this month’s Mobile World Congress in Barcelona.

The GSMA has proposed to its members that they hold a discussion regarding the possibility of a blanket ban on Huawei from the majority of developed markets within the ICT ecosystem.  A number of leading operators have expressed their disapproval at the tactics being used against Huawei, with many feeling it is a politically motivated campaign being led by the United States.

There is also a general consensus amongst ICT stakeholders and major players that any ban on Huawei will significantly impact the rollout of 5G networks. Vodafone CEO Nick Read has already publicly stated that a ban could delay the commercial deployment of 5G in Europe by up to two years.

It has been reported that the GSMA Director-General Mats Granryd has written to its members about Huawei and has said the current situation involving the Chinese vendor should be part of its agenda on its next board meeting in Barcelona later this month.

The GSMA represents mobile operators globally, and united more than 750 operators with over 350 companies as part of a broader mobile ecosystem, which includes the handset and device manufacturers, equipment providers and internet companies.

Huawei has found itself at the centre of intense scrutiny from the US in recent months, and was just like week charged with a number of indictments related to intellectual property theft and fraud. Huawei has vehemently denied any wrongdoing and has accused the US of participating in an ‘immoral political campaign’.

Diplomatic tensions between Beijing and Washington are strained and officials from both countries are set to meet again later this week to resume trade talks.

However, this isn’t the first time the US has went after a high-profile Chinese telecommunications company. Huawei’s domestic rival ZTE was pushed to the brink of bankruptcy after draconian measures were imposed against them by the US Department of Commerce.

Huawei has been banned from any role in the rollout of 5G networks in Australia and New Zealand. The European Union has said it will look at the issues that have been alleged by the US.

Published in Telecom Vendors

Europe’s largest telecommunications operator Deutsche Telekom has warned that if governments across the continent decide to implement a ban on Chinese vendor Huawei, then the rollout of 5G networks could be delayed by at least two years.

Published in Telecom Operators

US completes its first 5G auction

Written on Tuesday, 29 January 2019 12:20

The US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has completed its first 5G auction, with a sale of 28GHz spectrum licensing which raised a cool $702 million.

The chairman of the FCC, Ajit Pai expressed his delight at the successful completion of the first auction and said that it represented a significant step towards positioning the United States as a leader in 5G.

In addition to this, he declared that it was the objective of the commission to continue to pursue its strategy of pushing more spectrum licenses into the commercial marketplace. It was also confirmed that a 24GHz auction will take place in the next few months, and that will be followed by three more spectrum bands later in 2019.

The chairman of the FCC said that by that spectrum auctions were critical in helping it execute on its goal which enables US consumers to benefit from the benefits provided by 5G.

He said, “By making more spectrum licenses available, promoting the deployment of wireless infrastructure, and modernising our regulations – the three components of the FCC’s 5G FAST plan – we’ll ensure that American consumers reap the substantial benefits that will come from the next generation of wireless connectivity.

A total of 3,072 licences offered in 425MHz blocks were up for grabs in the 28GHz auction. Of these, only 107 received no acceptable bids. However, the identities of the winning bidders will remain private and anonymous until the close of the 24GHz auction.

Earlier in the month the FCC had reiterated its desire to continue to work on scheduled spectrum auctions, as it prepared to temporarily close down most of its other operations.

In November 2018, the agency had said it set strict performance requirements for the licences to encourage the swift rollout of 5G services - and will take dim view on any attempt to seek a waiver of the requirements ahead of construction deadlines.

Published in Telecom Operators

Embattled Chinese telecommunication vendors Huawei and ZTE have received a welcome reprieve following the news that two Spanish operators are planning on using them for forthcoming 5G pilots.

Published in Telecom Vendors

Chinese telecommunication vendors ZTE and Huawei have both endured a difficult number of years in the US marketplace – and their issues have multiplied during the Trump administration.

ZTE were momentarily crippled and almost went out of business following a decision by the US Department of Commerce to ban US companies from using their equipment and products for 7 years. However, following an intervention from US President Donald Trump, the ban was overturned and the vendor was instead hit with a $1bn fine and has to adhere to a number of strict rules and regulations.

Huawei have also been subjected to sharp criticism and have been deemed by US intelligence as a serious threat to national security due to their close ties to the Chinese government. Observers believe that the aggression from the US towards the Chinese telecommunication vendors is part of Trump’s plan to use them as pawns in his trade war with China.

Tensions between Washington and Beijing escalated when ZTE were initially banned, and it sparked an angry backlash from China. The rest of the world looked on anxiously as the two economic superpowers clashed head-on, it has since deescalated, but the high-profile arrest of Huawei CFO Meng Wanzhou in Vancouver has once again put diplomatic relations between the two countries under the microscope.

However, the situation in the US for both ZTE and Huawei is set to worsen following reports that US President Donald Trump is set to issue an executive order that would effectively ban operators in the country from using the Chinese manufacturer’s equipment and products.

Reuters has reported that the Trump administration has been mulling over the order for eight months, but it expected to formally enact it later this month.  It is said the order would not name Huawei or its compatriot ZTE by name but would give the US Department of Commerce scope to ban any supplier it suspects of being a threat to national security.

Published in Telecom Vendors

The Next Generation Mobile Networks (NGMN) Alliance - which drives and guides the development of all future mobile broadband technology with a focus on 5G - has published its three deliverables on 5G Extreme Requirements entitled “Operators’ views on fundamental trade-offs”, “RAN Solutions”, and “End-to-End considerations”, respectively.

Compiled by the Alliance’s 5G Extreme Requirements task force, the papers aim to highlight what implications and trade-offs related to the delivery of new 5G services are relevant for mobile network operators.

Ilaria Thibault, task force lead and Principal Researcher at Vodafone commented: “We are very excited to reveal the findings of the outcome of the Extreme Requirements task force, which was to really strike at the heart of what needs to be assessed before the world embarks on advanced 5G services.

This work quantifies and analyses the coverage impact of delivering new extreme 5G services (Ultra-reliable and Low-latency – URLLC) for the radio access network with a theoretical analysis, system-level simulations, and field trials. End-to-end deployment guidelines for meeting extreme requirements at a service level are also provided. Among these guidelines, techniques such as path redundancy and new transport-layer protocols are discussed to improve end-to-end latency and reliability.

For latency-critical services, interworking between the Non-3GPP processing delays and 3GPP processing delays has been assessed.”

CEO of the NGMN Alliance Peter Meissner added: “Our task force has highlighted several key challenges that are crucial to the future of 5G’s connectivity path - and how the industry needs to adequately deal with these. Consequently, this year’s NGMN Conference & Exhibition will see us run a special session where operators are set to share results from their 5G tests, trials and first user experience. Our aim is to uncover the new use cases of 5G and how they will be leveraged in the next few years.”

Published in Infrastructure
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