KDDI uses HPE server for O-RAN 5G SA virtualized base stations in Japan

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KDDI recently claimed to have activated the world’s first commercial 5G SA O-RAN site in Japan

Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE) has announced that Japanese telecommunications company KDDI is using the HPE ProLiant DL110 Gen10 Plus Telco Server for commercial network operation of O-RAN compliant 5G standalone base stations.

HPE said its server used for the virtualized base station is designed for O-RAN and vRAN workloads, and is optimized for edge applications that require high bandwidth and low latency.

“The O-RAN compliant 5G virtualized base stations we developed are now commercially operational,” said Kazuyuki Yoshimura, CTO at KDDI Corporation. “With open and virtualized base stations, KDDI aims to provide customers with advanced communication services that flexibly and quickly support their use cases. KDDI will continue to take the lead in developing innovative network technologies , while providing customers with safe and secure communications in addition to new value-added experiences.

HPE said it is working with telcos to provide a near-contactless operational experience for deploying its infrastructure and disaggregated RAN workloads, bringing infrastructure automation and management, as well as network and service management to a single cloud-based platform.

“It is a great honor to support KDDI’s initiative with HPE Telecom Infrastructure amid heightened expectations for 5G as digital transformation accelerates in Japan,” said Hirokazu Mochizuki, Managing Director from HPE Japan.

The HPE ProLiant DL110 Gen10 Plus – Telco Server features built-in security, intelligent management automation, is based on an open standards-based architecture, and supports software-based RAN solutions from various vendors.

HPE also noted that operational management efficiency is achieved through automation and software-defined control to help reduce provisioning, maintenance and deployment time. The server is carrier-grade and integrates multiple functions (baseband unit, relay gateway and cell-site gateway router) to reduce the footprint needed in 5G base stations, the company said.

This server is an integral part of the HPE Open RAN solution stack that complements the core HPE 5G stack.

Last month, KDDI claimed to have activated the world’s first commercial 5G Standalone (SA) Open Radio Access Network (Open RAN) site in partnership with Samsung and Fujitsu. Powered by Virtualized Radio Access Network (vRAN), the first network site has gone live in Kawasaki, Kanagawa.

The network site uses Samsung’s Open RAN-enabled 5G Virtualized CU (vCU) and DU (vDU) and Fujitsu’s Open RAN-enabled Massive MIMO radio units.

By replacing dedicated hardware with software elements, virtualization and Open RAN technology bring a new level of flexibility and agility to KDDI’s network, which the operator claims will enable it to offer enhanced mobile services. Additionally, KDDI said this architecture will take advantage of system automation, providing more reliability, while accelerating the deployment of Open RAN throughout Japan, including in rural areas.

The companies said other parts of Japan will receive Open RAN sites in 2022.

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