Nokia is to introduce technologies that leverage licensed, unlicensed and shared spectrum for the creation of robust, private end-to-end networks for vertical industries. The solution involves a combination of multi-access edge computing (MEC) capabilities and Nokia’s Flexi Zone, Cloud Packet Core and global services expertise.
MEC technology allows the introduction of applications tailored to specific business needs. Nokia will now make multi-operator and multi-access network interworking commercially available.
Using MEC capabilities, Nokia aims to provide an overlay approach to a multi-operator, multi-access RAN network, aggregating the enterprise Wi-Fi or other private wireless networks with an operator's wireless network to boost performance. This will allow the enterprise or venue to deliver the best possible experience for customers using the Wi-Fi network while adding LTE capacity and robustness.
Nokia and Wi-Fi provider Boingo have signed an agreement to trial the technology. Dr. Derek Peterson, chief technology officer at Boingo, said: "Network Functions Virtualisation (NFV) is now at the foundation of Boingo's next-generation networks and participation in trials involving the technology helps keep us at the forefront of wireless connectivity. New NFV advancements like Nokia's latest MEC capabilities will be crucial to the 5G vision and convergence of LTE and Wi-Fi."
At Mobile World Congress, Nokia will showcase the MulteFire (which enables LTE to be deployed in unlicensed spectrum) release 1.0-compliant live service running on a commercial Flexi Zone small cell.
One demonstration will use MulteFire carrier aggregation to boost network performance, while Nokia will also show how MulteFire could be developed in the future to support narrowband-IoT (NB-IoT) connectivity for efficient use of spectrum and increased battery life of devices.
Nokia will also explain how enterprises, venues and the hospitality industry in the United States will be able to use the 3.5 GHz Citizens Broadband Radio Service (CBRS) shared spectrum to deploy private LTE for their own business needs while also providing access to operators' subscribers.
CBRS Flexi Zone small cells - combined with a neutral host gateway and neutral host capable devices - will enable private CBRS LTE network owners to easily allow transparent connectivity for operators' subscribers, helping with operators' densification and indoor penetration needs on their path to 5G.
The Nokia flexible multi-access Cloud Packet Core enables common anchoring of licensed spectrum such as 2G, 3G, 4G and 5G as well as shared and unlicensed spectrum including Wi-Fi, MulteFire and LTE-based CBRS technologies to support a diverse range of mobile broadband, IoT/massive machine-type communication enterprise services and applications.
Nokia said it is further expanding the Cloud Packet Core deployment options with a new range of pre-integrated Cloud mobile gateway and Cloud mobility manager platforms to support a diverse range of business and operational deployment models for enterprises.
These end-to-end enterprise network capabilities are complemented by Nokia global services expertise. Leveraging the AVA platform, Nokia can offer extensive network planning, optimization, care services and full managed services.
Thorsten Robrecht, head of Advanced Mobile Solutions at Nokia, said: "Our portfolio of technologies and services will allow us to build and operate private networks working with enterprises or with providers to serve their enterprise customers.
“We can leverage our leadership in licensed, unlicensed and shared spectrum to tailor the network to meet specific demands using the most appropriate access technologies to right-size capacity for enterprises and serve their business needs in a highly reliable and secure way."