Verizon, Ericsson Trial Container-based EPC Deployment in Live Network

Verizon, Ericsson Trial Container-based EPC Deployment in Live Network Image Credit: Verizon

In a proof-of-concept trial in a live network environment, Verizon and Ericsson have introduced cloud native, container based technology on the core of Verizon’s active network. 

This trial, the first container-based wireless Evolved Packet Core(EPC) technology deployment in a live network in the world, introduces a much more efficient way to deliver operational applications that run the network.  It is a solution that will increase agility and enable deployment at scale for new services in 4G and 5G, says Ericsson.

That operational autonomy will be critical for the next generation of services being enabled by new network technologies. The advanced capabilities of 4G LTE and the high speed, increased bandwidth and low latency of 5G will help inspire development of a wide variety of new use cases that include everything from massive numbers of IoT devices that do very little networking, to smartphones with nearly infinite opportunities to use data, to more complex solutions such as AR/VR that will require massive computing capabilities on the edge of the network. 

Those solutions will each require different combinations of network capabilities.  Cloud-native virtualization, in combination with built-in Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning (AI-ML), will enable dynamic allocation of the appropriate resources and automated network configuration changes - including the ability to scale up or scale down network function capacity - to provide the right service levels and network resources needed for each use case. 

The proof-of-concept trial took place in Hillsboro, Oregon and the deployment was conducted on Verizon’s commercial network, using Ericsson Packet Core Controller deployed as a cloud-native and microservice-based Mobility Management Entity (MME) in an existing pool.  The software used leverages docker images and helm charts, with expected updates on the software from Ericsson every two weeks.  

Bill Stone, VP of Technology Development and Planning, Verizon
By evolving our core network past simply using virtualized machines and instead changing our underlying software architecture to run on cloud-native technology, we are able to achieve new levels of operational automation, flexibility and adaptability.

Nils Viklund, Head of Solution Area Packet Core, Ericsson
Ericsson is leading the industry when it comes to driving cloud-native design in order to bring the agility needed to manage workloads dynamically at the edge required for many new 5G use cases.

Ray is a news editor at The Fast Mode, bringing with him more than 10 years of experience in the wireless industry.

For tips and feedback, email Ray at ray.sharma(at)thefastmode.com, or reach him on LinkedIn @raysharma10, Facebook @1RaySharma

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