Sunday, June 6, 2021

Vodafone tests multi-vendor RAN intelligent controller

Vodafone, in conjunction with Cohere Technologies, VMware, Capgemini Engineering, Intel and Telecom Infra Project (TIP), demonstrated an Open Radio Access Network (RAN) platform capable of increasing the capacity of a 5G cell site by two-fold using a programmable, Artificial Intelligence (AI)-based RAN Intelligent Controller (RIC).

Specifically, he companies showed the first demonstration of 5G Multi-User MIMO (MU-MIMO) – providing more capacity at a single cell site – running on a RIC located at a multi-vendor Open RAN test site.  MU-MIMO apportions ample bandwidth to individual users connected to the same mobile site and is considered the pivotal technique to boost cell capacity in future 5G networks. It is a major development in supporting the insatiable demand for faster and more responsive digital connections to deliver high definition graphics, virtual reality, cloud and IT applications.

Based on the performance of Cohere’s Spectrum Multiplier MU-MIMO scheduler in the trial, when the technique is commercially deployed in a low-band (e.g. 700MHz) network, users will benefit from up to 2x the capacity achieved using traditional MIMO. This software can be extended to Massive MIMO in mid-band (e.g. 3.5GHz) networks in order to push capacity gains towards 4-5x.