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SOLiD, a global cellular in-building and public safety infrastructure provider, announced this week it will deliver solutions based on the O-RAN Alliance architecture to global operators in South Korea, Japan, the United States and throughout the Europe and Middle East region.
O-RAN is short for Open Radio Access Network. Radio Access Networks, or RAN’s, have been in use since cellular technology began and have evolved through each generation of mobile communications (with 4G being the most current generation). In a RAN, radio sites provide radio access and coordinate resource management across those sites. When devices are wirelessly connected to a core network, the RAN will send its signal to different wireless endpoints as the signal travels with other networks’ traffic. Today, RAN’s can support multi-band carrier aggregation, Multiple-input, Multiple Output (MIMO) antennas, large spectrum bandwidths and more.
Meanwhile, the “O” part of the equation is in reference to O-RAN Alliance’s desire to create new levels of openness within these Radio Access Networks. This includes having open interfaces available so smaller vendors and operators can introduce their own services or customize a network to suit their own unique needs, according to the O-RAN Alliance’s website. The Alliance also believes open interfaces will enable multi-vendor deployments that will enable a more competitive and vibrant supplier ecosystem. Additionally, open source software and hardware reference designs can enable faster, more democratic and permission-less innovation.
The company recently joined the O-RAN Alliance, a world-wide, carrier-led effort to drive new levels of openness in the radio access network of next generation wireless systems, as a contributing member and now is among the enterprises leading the industry towards open, interoperable interfaces and RAN virtualization.
The O-RAN Alliance-defined open interface is a key feature for advanced and efficient mobile RAN in 5G environments, along with 4G, which benefits mobile operators and vendors. SOLiD’s product and technology innovation paths are aligned with the O-RAN Alliance-defined open interface, especially for products like the company’s IA-8000, Mobile Front-haul Solution, and GENESIS Distributed Antenna System.
“SOLiD is at the forefront of providing Open RAN solutions to global operators in South Korea, Japan, the US and across the globe,” SOLiD CEO, Dr. Seung Hee Lee said in a statement. “Our early experience, and other ongoing Open RAN initiatives can accelerate deployment of innovative radio technology in mobile networks across the globe. We are delivering O-RAN solutions in 2019 and will do so for years to come.”
“The RAN market is due for new business and technology models, lower price points and easier deployments scenarios – these will be needed to lower the cost of 5G deployment and speed time to market,” iGR President Iain Gillott said in a statement. “O-RAN allows vendors such as SOLiD, with extensive radio expertise, to enter the market and provide a range of solutions.”