Nokia’s AirScale Multi-Operator Radio Access Network solution will enable SoftBank and KDDI subscribers to share RAN and get 5G services faster.

network infrastructure

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SoftBank and KDDI has picked Nokia as one of the vendors to deliver 5G services to subscribers of both mobile operators in Japan.

Nokia will install a Multi-Operator Radio Access Network (MORAN), which will allow both companies to share the RAN while keeping core networks separate. Network sharing helps support efficient RAN deployments as base station sites and infrastructure (equipment) are shared.

Under the deal, Nokia will supply its latest AirScale products including baseband and radio platforms. Nokia’s MORAN is triple mode and covers LTE, 5G as well as Dynamic Spectrum Sharing.

Nokia will also provide its new generation of ReefShark System-on-Chip based plug-in cards to increase the capacity of the AirScale baseband. The new ReefShark-powered plug-in cards are easily installed and simplify the upgrade and extended operation of all AirScale deployments. They also deliver up to eight times more throughput compared to previous generations.

Nokia’s AirScale baseband will enable SoftBank and KDDI to scale capacity flexibly and efficiently and as their 5G business evolves.

Lower costs, more coverage and greater efficiencies

According to Nokia, MORAN is a way for mobile operators to share radio access network infrastructure, reduce their costs, expand the coverage of their networks and achieve an efficient and effective roll-out of new technologies. The RAN uses dedicated radio frequencies assigned to each service provider ensuring they maintain independent control of their resources.

Nokia’s flexible MORAN solution can also be utilised by mobile operators and enterprises for private networks, as well as public networks or industrial campuses.

“To deliver the best 5G experience to customers nationwide as quickly as possible, SoftBank is working with KDDI to develop a shared 5G network. In this effort, a Multi-Operator Radio Access Network is a key technology that will bring various efficiencies,” said Tomohiro Sekiwa, Senior Vice President and CNO, SoftBank.

Tatsuo Sato, Vice President and Managing Officer, Technology Planning, KDDI, said the operator will work closely with both Nokia and SoftBank to accelerate 5G network deployment across Japan.

Tommi Uitto, President of Mobile Networks at Nokia, said the latest AirScale solutions will be utilised, including new baseband plug-in cards to add capacity where it is needed.

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