Nokia, in partnership with China Mobile Research Institute has launched what it claims is the industry's first hybrid indoor radio solution with location services to meet 5G connectivity demands inside busy large buildings such as business campuses and shopping malls.

The jointly developed 5G hybrid distributed indoor system is aimed at lowering operators' deployment costs. Research conducted by China's Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT) shows that consumption of 70% of 5G business applications will take place indoors, with high-value customers likely to spend 80% of their working hours in an indoor environment. As a result, indoor coverage has become a key area for operators to develop new 5G services.

China Mobile has long utilized distributed access systems (DAS) for 4G indoor coverage and wanted a solution that would meet the demands of 5G while reducing costs as it introduces innovative new services. Nokia and China Mobile jointly developed the industry-first 5G low-cost hybrid distributed indoor system to meet these challenges. This active smart indoor coverage system leverages the Nokia 5G Pico RRH system together with passive DAS antennas and Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) technology. With fewer active elements to deploy compared to Pico systems, the solution reduces deployment costs to the levels associated with traditional passive-only DAS systems, while delivering greater capacity than DAS, said Nokia.

Zhang Xinwang, Senior Researcher, China Mobile Research Institute
Our collaborations with Nokia Shanghai Bell, along with the innovations jointly achieved, will help us maintain the leading position in 5G coverage and capacity while effectively lowering implementation costs.

Chang Jiang, CTO, Customer Operations, Nokia Shanghai Bell
As a leader in 5G, Nokia will continue to build on its technology momentum to help China Mobile evolve its network to meet its business and consumer customers' increasing demands in the 5G world.

Swisscom, the largest telecommunications service provider in Switzerland has selected Ericsson to enhance the consumer experience for its subscribers through deployment and integration of the Ericsson Expert Analytics solution into its existing big data ecosystem.

Ericsson’s solution will deliver data analysis and actionable insights for the service provider’s 5.3 million 4G mobile broadband subscribers using video and other OTT applications on the nationwide mobile network.

Swisscom is a pioneer for 5G services with Ericsson as its strategic partner. The two companies have already achieved a number of significant milestones in making 5G a commercial reality, highlighted recently by Europe’s first end-to-end, multivendor 5G Non-Standalone (NSA) data call on 3.5 GHz band. Swisscom was also the first announced customer for Ericsson’s strengthened end-to-end mobile transport solutions.

Daniel Staub, Head of Joint Mobile Group, Swisscom
Delivering a superior experience to our customers is at the very center of Swisscom’s strategy, and Ericsson Expert Analytics will help us to pursue this vision even further by providing us with end-to-end visibility of our services across our 4G mobile broadband network. 

Arun Bansal, President and Head of Ericsson Europe and Latin America
Satisfied customers are loyal customers. Not only will Ericsson Expert Analytics enhance the customer experience and improve network quality for Swisscom, it also paves the way for smoother entry to 5G, IoT and cloud services with the solution’s advanced capabilities.

Published in Technology & Solutions

The GSMA has raised concerns that the proposed terms of the upcoming 5G spectrum award in Germany from the Federal Network Agency contain unreasonable and unrealistic license conditions that pose a substantial risk to the roll out of ultra-fast 5G networks across the country.

While the GSMA has welcomed the German government’s decision to release the entire 3.4 to 3.8 GHz band (C-Band), essential for the future development of 5G services globally, the conditions on the allocation of these vital frequencies jeopardise Germany’s 5G deployment.

The GSMA’s primary concerns with the conditions are as follows: The coverage obligations for the 3.6 GHz band include population coverage of 98 per cent with 100 Mbit/s and 10ms latency, as well as all transport paths. Although the frequencies on offer can provide very high capacity, they only cover a relatively small area and are not well suited to wide area coverage such as countryside roads, waterways and railways. The investment needed to achieve the obligations far outweighs the value of the licenses; The roaming and wholesale obligations attached to the 3.4 to 3.7 GHz band introduce a critical level of legal uncertainty and will deter investment in 5G networks in Germany; 100 MHz of this critical 5G spectrum – one quarter of the total spectrum available – will be reserved for local use. This undercuts Germany’s efforts at 5G leadership, by driving up spectrum costs and limiting the amount of spectrum available for nationwide usage; and The auction rules contain massive advantages for newcomers that undermine fair competition by allowing them to meet significantly lower coverage requirements and to invoke a negotiation requirement for national roaming. This means, for example, that a new entrant could become a network operator by targeting a few locations in lucrative dense urban locations, relying on the infrastructure of existing network operators in sub-urban and rural areas. Not only does this further undercut the purported policy objectives on the already unrealistic coverage obligations, but it will reduce the incentive for operators to invest in underserved areas. As experience in other countries has shown, such an approach will drive roll-out activity primarily in cities.

Mats Granryd, Director General, GSMA
We are alarmed that – despite real and substantial concerns raised by the mobile industry on the original proposals – the proposed terms make the situation worse by doubling down on unrealistic conditions that puts Germany’s 5G future at risk.

Published in Regulations

TIM, together with Ericsson and Qualcomm Technologies has successfully completed the first 5G connection in Italy on TIM’s live network using the country’s first 5G prototype smartphone.

At the TIM laboratories based in Turin, the first OTA (Over the Air) connection trials compliant with the 3GPP 5G NR (New Radio) Release 15 specifications featuring Ericsson’s technology, using the Massive MIMO solution, were completed. The test uses for the first time in Italy a smartphone based on the Qualcomm Snapdragon X50 5G chipset, that will be in some of the first 5G smartphones available on the market in 2019.  

For the implementation of these latest 5G transmission trials, TIM used a portion of the 3.4-3.8 GHz spectrum range, which was assigned to the operator following the recent auction of spectrum conducted by the Ministry for Economic Development in Italy, connecting the prototype 5G device to the TIM network. This demonstration is a fundamental step towards the implementation of 5G in Italy to benefit TIM customers.

Elisabetta Romano, CTO, TIM
With this significant milestone of connecting the first 5G test smartphone to our network, TIM confirms its leading role in Italy and its determination to create a mobile network to support the evolutions offered by 5G.

Enrico Salvatori, SVP and President, Qualcomm Europe/Middle East and Africa, Qualcomm Europe
This is an important step in bringing commercial 5G networks and services to Italian consumers; and our 5G mobile test device, powered by the Snapdragon X50 5G chipset, is the key element of this accomplishment.

Published in Technology & Solutions

Ericsson has been selected by Millicom’s TIGO to modernize its radio access network (RAN) across Paraguay and Honduras in a multi-year deal involving the rollout of Ericsson Radio System.

Under this deal, Ericsson will implement the Ericsson Radio System portfolio into approximately 1,000 of TIGO’s sites with the first phase taking place in Paraguay and Honduras in 2018. Spending earmarked for this important network modernization project was already contemplated in Millicom’s existing investment plans.

The rollout will provide Radio 2219 as well as Radio 4415, enabling full 4x4 MIMO capabilities. The deal also includes indoor coverage through the Radio Dot System and micro radios for hotspot capacity in Paraguay. These installations will improve overall network quality and user experience for TIGO’s customers across those countries.

As part of this project, Ericsson will also expand TIGO’s existing network and modernize the existing 2G/3G and 4G sites, making the network the best fit for TIGO to deliver 5G and IoT services in the future.

Since its launch in 2015, Ericsson has delivered Ericsson Radio System to more than 240 service providers worldwide, enabling them to address growth opportunities and transform their radio networks with 5G-ready, multi-standard solutions and a modular architecture. It delivers industry-leading performance on the smallest site footprint with the lowest energy consumption.

Xavier Rocoplan, EVP, CTIO, Milicom
We continue to be committed to our customers by bringing the best network to them. Working with Ericsson allows us to deploy the latest mobile technologies that are an important component for our path evolving to 5G and IoT capabilities.

Arun Bansal, President of Ericsson in Europe and Latin America
We listened to TIGO and understood their urgency to have 5G-ready infrastructure to stay at the forefront of customer service in Paraguay and Honduras. Through this partnership, we are deploying our state-of-the-art Ericsson Radio System that offers quicker time to market and superior network performance.

Published in Technology & Solutions

HUAWEI CLOUD officially launched its Blockchain Service (BCS) for global use after launching it for commercial use in China on October 10th this year.

Now available on the international HUAWEI CLOUD website, the service helps global enterprises and developers create, deploy, and manage blockchain applications quickly and at minimal cost on HUAWEI CLOUD. Its global launch lays the foundations for a distributed global blockchain platform.

Being Proactive Essential to Building a Blockchain EcosystemBlockchain features decentralization, tamper resistance, and traceability, and builds trust between transaction participants. As such, blockchain generates value when used in enterprise applications in specific industry scenarios. Enterprises in various industries are currently exploring the applications of blockchain, but deploying a blockchain on a cloud is no mean feat. Indeed, developers need to have a thorough understanding of blockchain technologies. Deployment is also time-consuming.

As early as 2016, Huawei joined Hyperledger, the most influential open source project in the blockchain field, hosted by the Linux Foundation. For its continuous technical and code contributions in two sub-projects, Fabric and STL, Huawei has been recognized as a key Hyperledger maintainer. Huawei is also the only maintainer from Asia in these sub-projects.

BCS is a cloud service that capitalizes on the advantages of HUAWEI CLOUD's container and security technologies, among others. It is easy to use, efficient, and universally applicable, and can be used in data applications, the Internet of Things (IoT), finance, and other fields. The scenarios it can be used in cover data transactions, identity authentication, proof of information (such as real estate and education), remote healthcare, food source tracing, the Internet of Vehicles (IoV), and IoT device management. It offers substantial assistance for establishing a technological ecosystem and digitally transforming industries.

Published in Technology & Solutions

GSMA announced that Tigo Paraguay has become the first provider in the region to achieve GSMA Mobile Money Certification.

The certification initiative, which was launched in April 2018, is a global programme to bring safer, more transparent and more resilient financial services to millions of mobile money users around the world. With the addition of Tigo Money Paraguay, certified providers now collectively represent 114 million mobile money accounts worldwide.

The certification requirements, validated by an independent assessor, include a set of eight high-level principles and 300 detailed criteria covering issues such as security, consumer rights and the prevention of money laundering, risk mitigation, financing of terrorism and fraud. Certification is open to all mobile money providers, whether they are a mobile operator, a bank or other type of payment service provider, and a pass mark of 100 per cent is required.

The certification criteria complements providers’ compliance efforts, but goes beyond regulation in detail and scope, defining and promoting industry best practices. Responsible business practices are essential to help regulators achieve their goals around financial inclusion, stability, integrity and consumer protection.

Sebastian Cabello, Head of Latin America, GSMA
Mobile money has emerged as a key contributor to financial inclusion in the Latin American and Caribbean region, with over 21 million registered accounts across 17 markets. 

Ramiro Pascual, CEO, Tigo Paraquay
This certification will positively impact business partnerships since it promotes excellence in the provision of mobile money services, shows that our business practices are amongst the best in the industry and that as an industry, we are serious about protecting the rights of consumers, delivering reliable and secure services and combating money laundering.

We are already entering into the era of 5G. It will enable a host of new applications for enterprises and consumers, including augmented reality, virtual reality, IoT, autonomous vehicles, enhanced mobile broadband and many more. Soon, there will be an explosion in the number of devices. The already dense IT networks are poised to become even more complicated. Traditional automation frameworks will no longer be sufficient, and artificial intelligence and machine learning will pave the way for nextgen automation driving a real end to end digital transformation.

The following five trends will shape our future.

#1: Growth of 5G and 5G enabled ecosystems

Telecom operators have already started 5G trials. Non-Standalone deployments are expected to commence by early 2019. 5G is developed to enrich the experience of not just the mobile device users but the entire communications technology ecosystem. Increase in bandwidth and support for ultra-low latency in 5G will fuel innovative new applications in the augmented and virtual reality and healthcare space. We can expect exciting applications in the area of Tactile feedback remote surgery and vehicle to vehicle communications, where the growth so far has been muted due to the lack of proper cellular support. IoT devices are rising exponentially and are gaining ground in nearly all verticals - homes, smart cities, retail, healthcare, business, industries and many more. In the coming years, we’ll see a massive increase in the number of devices connecting to an always-on network.

#2: Networks to get more complex

Cisco VNI estimates that by the year 2021 there will be around 27 billion connected devices, and 43% of all the devices will be network connected. The already complex IT network is set to become even more complicated. Adding to the administrator's woes is the growing number of professionals working from home. It is estimated that 70% of the workforce telecommutes at least once a week. The rise of BYOD (Bring your own device) culture, Hybrid and Multi-cloud infrastructures, continuous creation of innovative applications, and heavy demand for bandwidth consuming services such as streaming videos, gaming, and social media applications are all leading to unprecedented levels of interconnections - further complicating the network. Companies will invest significant resources in finding ways to reduce network complexity going into 2019.

#3: Increased focus on hardening network security

Product Marketing Manager,
Anuta Networks

Most companies have a hybrid or a multi-cloud strategy. While this strategy offers an opportunity to streamline application delivery, improve customer experience and reduce operational expenditures, it also opens up multiple points of entries for attackers. Multi-vendor and Multi-domain environments provide a significant challenge to the network administrators to uphold security policies. Products from various vendors have different capabilities, and it is becoming increasingly difficult to understand and manage how the various security policies adapt to each product. Many large networks work as a collection of separate smaller networks where each network implements the security policies in their own way. Such disjoint networks lack a unified management interface making them vulnerable to various kinds of cyber attacks. Security will be of significant interest to all companies, and we are going to see many innovative applications in this sphere.

#4: Rise of Smart Automation

Companies are likely to spend substantial resources to automate their network as much as they can, to not be left behind. Manual scripting and pointed solutions will not be able to scale to match the massive increase in network demands. There will be a rise of innovative and smart network automation solutions that can manage devices, automate services and enforce compliance across on-prem and hybrid deployments. Next-Gen automation will be equipped with AI and Machine learning to combat the network complexity and security challenges. The automation will evolve from the traditional detect and respond to a more intelligent predict and prevent strategy.


#5: Analytics, Machine Learning, and Artificial Intelligence adoption set to increase

We have been hearing these buzzwords for the past few years now, and we are sure to hear more of them in the coming years. Analytics and Big Data are helping companies improve their marketing and operations by providing meaningful, deep insights into their activities. Using Machine Learning and AI, companies are now transitioning from targetting a broad customer category to targetting the specific customer himself. Despite privacy concerns that are raised from time to time, AI and ML adoption is on the rise, and we are likely to see it’s application across most domains.

An increasing number of network administrators are looking towards Intent based Networking solutions to simplify their day to day operations. Automation of the network will prove critical to maintaining the sanity and security of the network in the coming few years.

Published in Technology & Solutions

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