Airspan Networks collabs with IBM on 5G Open Ran testbed

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Airspan Networks, a 5G hardware and software solutions provider, has joined forces with IBM to collaborate on a 5G-enabled Open RAN testbed.

The testbed will be deployed across the IBM Watson IoT Centre in Munich, Germany and IBM’s Global Industry Solution Centre (GISC) in Nice, France, to demonstrate long-distance control of 5G-enabled edge computing.

The goal of the trial is to help clients across Europe develop multi-vendor solutions to meet different use case requirements for customers, all the while optimising performance.

What’s more, the testbed will be designed to advance the development of Open RAN solutions and end-to-end interoperability testing with private 5G core networks.

In doing so, both companies plan to enable partners and customers to work together on integrating and testing features for next-gen campus networks.

Marisa Viveros, vice president of strategy and offerings, telecom, media and entertainment industry at IBM, said: “Open approaches and standards-based technologies are vital to help unleash the full potential of 5G and edge computing.

“That’s why, in collaboration with Airspan, we hope to work to advance emerging use cases that harness Open RAN and bring new value to telecom clients. The planned expansion of the Open RAN testbed will allow us to demonstrate these capabilities as we accelerate 5G and edge computing innovation.”

As part of the agreement, Airspan Networks will provide its Open RAN Air Velocity 2700 indoor radio unit and virtualised Open RAN Centralised Unit to help customers test and validate 5G private network solutions using Open RAN.

Meanwhile, IBM will provide its Global Business Services technology integration services, as well as IBM Cloud Pak for Network Automation and IBM Cloud Pak for Watson AIOps, to allow customers to more efficiently manage and orchestrate edge cloud implementation and applications.

Henrik Smith-Petersen, chief sales and marketing officer at Airspan, said: “Through critical collaboration with leaders like IBM and testing in these labs, which could help accelerate the development of Open RAN and 5G solutions and the open architecture ecosystem, we believe Airspan can continue to be at the forefront of innovation and industry disruption through end-to-end Open RAN solutions.”

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