US-based OpenRAN firm Parallel Wireless, Inc., has announced that Vodafone deployed a macro Parallel Wireless OpenRAN pilot in Asia (Turkey) and in Africa (Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC)).
According to a statement released by the companies, both production trials are a part of a Telecom Infra Project OpenRAN initiative to reduce deployment and maintenance costs for RAN platforms.
“Parallel Wireless virtualised multi-technology OpenRAN solution disaggregates hardware and software to make deployments fully virtualised, easy and affordable to install, maintain, and to upgrade to any future technology resulting in potential OPEX reduction by up to a third.
“Parallel Wireless has shown a very strong performance, quality of service and cost benefits while, for the first time simultaneously delivering all three RAN technologies (2G, 3G, 4G/LTE) to commercial customers,” part of the statement reads.
The multi-technology software-defined GPP-based base stations allowed Vodafone to replace legacy 2G systems with fully virtualised 2G technology and to run 2G and 4G simultaneously on the same base station to provide commercial data and voice services to Vodafone customers in Turkey, in urban and rural parts of the country.
At the same time, customers in DRC are receiving 2G and 3G service from the same base station simultaneously in a forthcoming trial. Multi-technology RRUs are software-defined, easy to deploy and maintain.
OpenRAN Controller is the industry only software platform that virtualises ALL G RAN and core functions (i.e., vBSC for 2G, vRNC for 3G, small cell and core gateways for 4G) to lower the cost of RAN through simplification, automation, and full virtualisation of networks.
It also provides seamless mobility, local breakout, and low latency for the best subscriber experience for Vodafone customers, the companies claim.
“The software enables an OpenRAN architecture by using standard-based and open interfaces between network components and as a result, enables an OpenRAN ecosystem. It also simplifies network management and integration of new RAN products into the core of the network through its automation layer and enables a clear technology evolution,” they add.
Amrit Heer, Head of Business Development, EME, Parallel Wireless said, “Hardware-based networks are costly and difficult to maintain and upgrade. By shifting networks to virtualised OpenRAN, telecom operators can cloudify their networks to deliver coverage to every single subscriber at much lower cost. We are proud to support Vodafone in reimagining wireless infrastructure to be much lower cost ensuring more equal access to connectivity.”
Lux Maharaj, Director, Africa Sales Parallel Wireless, said, “We are committed to our role in innovating in the OpenRAN ecosystem to help eliminate the digital divide. By decoupling the programmable RAN software from the hardware and allowing it to run on general-purpose processing platforms, Parallel Wireless enables cloud native architectures, providing greater flexibility for operators. As a result, the costs associated with building or modernising mobile networks are reduced and connectivity can be brought to every single person in the world.”