Samsung has announced that it has started offering its fully-virtualized 5G RAN solution to telecom operators. The company claims that its cloud-based RAN can match the performance and reliability of the usual dedicated RAN hardware that is designed for telecom firms. The South Korean tech giant claims that its new solution will improve the efficiency of the network and ease the deployment processor.

The 5G vRAN consists of a virtualized central unit, a virtualized distributed unit, and a wide range of radio units to enable a telecom firm to migrate to a 5G network. It replaces the dedicated hardware-based baseband with general-purpose computing platforms such as off-the-shelf servers. This helps a telecom firm in efficiently scaling the capacity of its 5G network easily and quickly to match its current needs and network load.

Samsung’s 5G vRAN solution matches the performance of hardware-based RAN and offers higher flexibility

Telecom firms can use COTS (commercial off the shelf) servers based on the x86 architecture, and operators have been using such hardware for years for their other IT needs. Now, they can use similar hardware for their 5G networks rather than buying costlier RAN hardware. Samsung’s vRAN solution offers easy expandability, flexibility, and manageability.

Samsung demonstrated the performance of its vRAN to its customers in April 2020 by running a 5G NR (New Radio) baseband functions in software on x86-based COTS server. The company used its cellular algorithms while testing Dynamic Spectrum Sharing, and the performance matched dedicated hardware-based RAN solutions. The company’s 5G VRAN will be available starting this quarter.

Jaeho Jeon, Executive Vice President and Head of R&D, Networks Business at Samsung Electronics, said, “Samsung’s 5G vRAN validates a software-based alternative to vendor-specific hardware, while offering high performance, flexibility, and stability. Once the solution becomes commercially available this quarter, we look forward to providing carriers with additional architectural options for building innovative and open 5G networks.”

Samsung is among the leading brands that offer end-to-end 5G infrastructure, including chipsets, cloud platform, core network, and radios for both mid-band and mmWave 5G networks. Its solutions are already in use by telecom firms in Canada, Europe, Japan, New Zealand, South Korea, and the US. It has the highest number of granted 5G patents. The company had recently released a cloud-based tool to boost operator profits.

Thanks to the trade ban on Huawei by the US and related security concerns in other markets, Samsung now stands a chance to become the leader in the 5G segment.

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