Announcing the expansion, Ericsson said the new solutions enabled smooth network evolution, and facilitated new consumer and industry use cases.
While already supporting frontrunner service providers through the rollout of commercial 5G using non-standalone 5G New Radio, Ericsson has now introduced standalone NR software and says, in addition to extending deployment possibilities, 5G standalone NR software makes for a “new network architecture, delivering key benefits such as ultra-low latency and even better coverage”.
The company says it is also evolving its cloud solution with an offering optimised for edge computing to meet user demand, which will enable service providers to offer new consumer and enterprise 5G services such as augmented reality and content distribution at low cost, low latency, and high accuracy.
Ericsson says the new standalone 5G NR software can be installed on its existing Radio System hardware.
Coupled with Ericsson’s 5G dual-mode Cloud Core solutions, the new products are aimed at opening new business opportunities for service providers – especially having established an architecture that facilitates agility, provides advanced support for network slicing and enables the speedy creation of new services.
Ericsson says most operators will start with NSA and once the 5G coverage has been established, also deploy standalone.
“Low bands will play a key role in cost-efficiently extending the coverage provided by 5G deployments to date. Ericsson has also launched Inter-band NR Carrier Aggregation – a new software feature that extends the coverage and capacity of NR on mid- and high bands when combined with NR on low bands. This will improve speeds indoors and in areas with poor coverage.
“Two new Massive MIMO radios have also been added to the Ericsson Radio System mid-band portfolio, allowing service providers to build 5G with precision.
“5G enables augmented reality, content distribution and gaming, and other applications that require low latency and high bandwidth to perform with accuracy. To help service providers meet these requirements and offer new consumer and enterprise services, Ericsson is evolving its cloud solution with the launch of Ericsson Edge NFVI (Network Functions Virtualisation Infrastructure), optimised for the network edge.
“A compact and highly efficient solution, Ericsson Edge NFVI is part of the end-to-end managed and orchestrated distributed cloud architecture, which makes it possible to distribute workloads, optimise the network and enable new services in the cloud,” Ericsson said.
Ericsson also announced it would be launching its VNF Certification Service, a partner certification program for virtual network functions. The company said the service is open to all VNF vendors and grants a certification on the Ericsson NFVI platform using Ericsson Labs, which will create an ecosystem with a shorter time-to-market for working with partners and applications.
Industry Analyst Hugh Ujhazy, vice-president, IOT & Telecommunications at International Data Corporation, Asia Pacific, says: “Ericsson’s latest 5G offerings equip service providers with an even broader 5G portfolio by adding the Standalone NR option. The series of solutions being added to the Ericsson 5G platform will allow service providers to deploy 5G sensibly and address new business opportunities with full flexibility. What you get is faster, cheaper, makes better use of existing assets and with fewer truck rolls. That’s pretty cool.”