Thursday, 22 November 2018 05:17

Huawei, Spark demo 5G trial network with separated access and core Featured

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Huawei New Zealand and local telco Spark have achieved a global first, switching on a live multi-vendor 5G trial network built to the full 3GPP Release 15 global industry standard.

A statement from the company said the trial, at Spark's 5G lab in Auckland, demonstrated the technical implementation of access and core separation.

The trial used a Huawei 5G NR (New Radio on both the C-band and mmWave) and a 4G Radio Access Network, both of which were deployed by using dedicated hardware connected to the Cisco Evolved Packet Core, with each component isolated.

This is the first multi-vendor 5G trial to achieve the benchmark set by Release 15 of the 3GPP standard. Spark has achieved the milestone of the world’s first 5G mmWave call through this network.

Last month, the director of the Australian Signals Directorate, Mike Burgess, had claimed it was not possible to achieve separation between the core and the edge in 5G networks.

“The distinction between core and edge collapses in 5G networks. That means that a potential threat anywhere in the network will be a threat to the whole network,” he was quoted as saying in The Australian.

Huawei New Zealand deputy managing director Andrew Bowater said: “The Auckland live multi-vendor 5G trial emphatically proves it is possible to retain the critical access-core network separation, which enables operators such as Spark to operate in a multi-vendor network environment, and retains the ability of governments to regulate the vendor technology mix while maintaining a competitive market.

“This is the fourth year of Huawei’s strategic partnership with Spark, and we are proud to have brought this multi-vendor 5G trial alive right here in Auckland. The live trial is designed in full accordance with the 3GPP Release 15 industry standards and proves the ability of existing networks to evolve from 4G to 5G smoothly.”

Spark’s technology director Mark Beder said the company was excited to be leading the 5G race in New Zealand.

“For Spark, 5G will drive the next evolution of our business and we are motivated to push the boundaries of this new technology," he said.

"It will deliver significantly faster speeds and more data capacity than previous generations of mobile technology and will support massive connectivity. The possibilities are endless, and we intend to make sure that Spark plays a key role in enabling this 5G journey for all of New Zealand."

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Sam Varghese

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Sam Varghese has been writing for iTWire since 2006, a year after the site came into existence. For nearly a decade thereafter, he wrote mostly about free and open source software, based on his own use of this genre of software. Since May 2016, he has been writing across many areas of technology. He has been a journalist for nearly 40 years in India (Indian Express and Deccan Herald), the UAE (Khaleej Times) and Australia (Daily Commercial News (now defunct) and The Age). His personal blog is titled Irregular Expression.

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