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Intel and Ericsson Leading Open Network Transformation

Daniel_Rodriguez
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Intel and Ericsson Leading Open Network

Transformation

 

Co-author: Oliver Buschmann – VP, Head of Group Strategy, Ericsson

 

Open mobile networks will power and accelerate digital transformation in critical areas for the future 

Digitalization and technology have revolutionized our world and enriched the lives of almost every person on earth. Mobile connectivity and cloud technology have played a central and instrumental role in evolving toward a future that will be increasingly mobile as demand for wireless data continues to grow – Ericsson’s recent mobility report forecasts a threefold increase in data traffic to 403 exabytes per month by 2029.1 

Today, major trends driving the demand for digital transformation include greater levels of AI and automation, sustainable operations aimed at decarbonization, resilient supply chains, and the pursuit of efficiency, productivity and better customer experiences in enterprises and industrial applications. To meet the demand, mobile operators must provide ubiquitous, high-performance mobile networks. These networks must be capable of offering differentiated value propositions optimized around aspects that matter most for specific applications and use cases. Examples include offering Quality-on-Demand (QoD) for media broadcasters at events, ensuring low latency for XR experiences or autonomous vehicles, and using location information for logistics or anti-fraud applications. 

 

High-performance networks are the foundation for digitalization and change

Turning this future into reality will require that mobile operators make the capabilities of ubiquitous, high-performance, differentiated networks available and easily accessible to a broad ecosystem of businesses and developers who can innovate and build upon those networks’ powerful capabilities. By merging cloud and traditional radio access networks (RAN) technologies, mobile operators can better optimize for higher performance and greater efficiency. 

 When mobile operators expose the programmability of their networks through APIs, they can tap into a broad ecosystem of developers and businesses to accelerate innovation and value creation. This acceleration will enable mobile operators to differentiate their network offerings and build new revenue streams. It will also unlock performance-based business models with differentiated connectivity tiers that deliver the right level of performance at the right price at the right time to meet the dynamic needs of consumers and enterprises. Adopting monetizable, sustainable, and resilient 5G networks is the foundation for next-generation network technologies. 

 

Cloud-native and open standards represent the future of networks 

Mobile operators need flexibility and scalability to support advanced technologies, maximize spectrum assets, and prepare networks for future demands. By embracing cloud- and AI-native networks based on open standards, such as Open RAN, mobile operators can take advantage of cloud infrastructure’s inherent flexibility and scalability. For example: 

  • Supporting dynamic resource allocation that adapts to varying network demands in real time by centralizing and virtualizing network functions. 
  • Enabling network capacity to adapt to demand without modifications to physical infrastructure – reducing CapEx and maximizing the value of a mobile operators spectrum. 
  • Future-proofing network infrastructure by allowing mobile operators to easily adopt and integrate new technologies crucial to keeping pace with competitors and staying relevant with customers. 
  • Reducing the physical network footprint while boosting energy efficiency to improve TCO and help advance sustainability goals. 
  • Orchestrating performance of increasingly complex 5G – and subsequent 6G – networks by processing data where it’s most efficient, from the edge to the data center. 
  • Supporting reliable, secure connectivity and control for multiple physical systems, from augmented reality to robotics. 

As market leaders in general-purpose cloud compute and telecommunications, Intel and Ericsson are working together to industrialize open architectures. Cloud-native open networks provide a path to processing data where it is most efficient or beneficial, from edge to cloud. In turn, this allows for optimization between network, devices, edge, and cloud, enabling applications and services to use network capabilities. 

 Intel and Ericsson combine cloud compute and network solution expertise to develop differentiated products for 5G and 6G infrastructure. This collaboration includes our joint research engagement on new AI-native capabilities and the Ericsson-Intel Tech Hub, where we work together to improve energy efficiency, boost network performance, and reduce time to market. An example of the resulting benefits for mobile operators is the optimized 4th Gen Intel® Xeon® Scalable processors with Intel® vRAN Boost and using Intel® Ethernet products for Ericsson Cloud RAN solutions. In the core network, the companies are also optimizing the Ericsson dual-mode 5G Core software on the latest Intel Xeon processors to provide high performance and energy efficiency In addition, as previously announced, the strategic partnership between Intel and Ericsson includes Ericsson’s 5G system-on-chip (SoC), based on Intel’s 18A process and manufacturing technology, for future 5G networks. 

 Intel and Ericsson are also working to define global standards supporting interoperability and common industry benchmarks. Our joint effort includes active and ongoing contributions to organizations such as 3GPP, IETF, the Linux Foundation, and the O-RAN Alliance. 

 

AI and network automation bring value to mobile operators and their customers

New and exciting opportunities are being generated by leveraging AI-powered features and solutions specifically created to meet the evolving needs of the telecommunications industry. Open and flexible AI models will simplify the most complex multi-vendor and multi-technology networks and allow mobile operators to: 

  • Optimize network performance, efficiency, and user experience by integrating AI into the RAN. This integration will enable mobile operators to use real-time, predictive analytics for more effective network orchestration. 
  • Deploy AI-enabled applications at or near the mobile network edge to process data for critical low-latency tasks, such as autonomous vehicle navigation and smart manufacturing systems, which both require rapid-response decision-making. 

As market leaders in general-purpose cloud, telecommunications, and AI acceleration technologies, Ericsson and Intel share a vision for the future of networks and a commitment to innovation. Mobile networks will power and accelerate digital transformation in critical areas for the future: AI and automation, sustainability, decarbonization, resilient supply chains, industrial and enterprise productivity and helping enterprises deliver better customer experiences. We believe the next era of telecommunications will be built on cloud-native and AI-native open networks, enabling mobile operators to see revenue and profitability growth. 

 

 

 

 

  1. Ericsson Mobility Report. Ericsson, November 2023. 

 

 

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About the Author
Daniel (Dan) C. Rodriguez is corporate vice president and general manager of the Network and Edge Solutions Group at Intel Corporation. He leads the organization that defines, markets and scale solutions across the network and edge, through a variety of industry sectors. Rodriguez is responsible for the group’s product lines, business strategies and ecosystem engagements that are driving a transformation of the network for 5G and buildout of the intelligent edge. Before assuming his current role, he was the general manager of the Network Platforms Group. In that position, he was responsible for delivering innovative technologies, solutions and business strategies for network infrastructure, spanning wireless, wireline, enterprise and cloud networking. Rodriguez holds a bachelor’s degree in finance from Arizona State University and earned his MBA degree from the University of Southern California.