Nokia announces end-to-end slicing network for 4G and 5G New Radio

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The company claims it is the first to offer this functionality, developed with partners A1 Telekom Austria and Telia Finland.

The solution will support connectivity from 4G and 5G devices over the sliced network to applications running in private and public clouds and will be available this summer.

Nokia said operators can start building their network slicing business with LTE and 5G New Radio (NR).

The slicing capability can be deployed via a software upgrade to LTE and 5G non-standalone (NSA) networks and subsequently 5G standalone (SA) networks.

The idea is that the continuity of slicing between LTE and 5G NR will enable operators to maximize their network coverage for new mobile connectivity services.

The solution provides sliced mobile broadband connectivity from device to radio, transport, core, to applications in private and public networks and the cloud.

Service-aware slicing

The user and service-aware slicing functionality has been introduced to Nokia radio access products for the first time and is also supported in Nokia transport and core products with control, management and assurance systems, the equipment maker said.

The solution supports all 4G and 5G devices and works in a multi-vendor environment.

Nokia’s slicing solution is being developed in collaboration with A1 and Telia. It delivers new value and business opportunities for enterprises, as well as for the Internet of Things, Fixed Wireless Access, applications and content related services.

It enables new mobile end-to-end services with logical connections, security, quality and traffic management with a seamless service continuity across 4G and 5G networks. Private wireless slicing also opens up new network functionalities for different applications, such as surveillance and automation.
 
Nokia is already trialing live 4G/5G slicing use cases with customers powered by a software defined network (SDN) radio-slice controller as well as a transport slice controller.

The trial includes a Nokia cloud packet core slice orchestrator to support network deployment automation as well as an SD-WAN software solution providing a managed 4G/5G network slice to private and public cloud services.

Nokia assurance systems are used to verify per slice key performance indicators as a part of Nokia’s end-to-end service orchestration.

Partner pioneers

Alexander Kuchar, Director Technology & Future Services, A1 Telekom Austria Group, said: “We are proud to be among the first operators worldwide who successfully demonstrated end-to-end network slicing, spanning the core, transport and radio over our 4G as well as 5G networks.

“For our business customers, it will be a huge advantage to be able to benefit from dedicated mobile communication services, exclusive capacities, strong data security and transmission with high reliability and low latency by integrating A1’s highly reliable and excellent infrastructure and services offering into their internal processes. Network slicing in 4G and extended in 5G will play a key role in allowing A1 to develop new market segments and revenue streams.”
 
Jari Collin, Chief Technology Officer, Telia Finland, said, “It has been really exciting to be the first operator to conduct a live test of Nokia’s new network slicing feature. As a 5G frontrunner in business customer pilots and solutions, we know that this will be a key functionality that will deliver many of the promises our customers are waiting for.

“With slicing, we can efficiently use our spectrum to deliver seamless and reliable connectivity and also strengthen our leading IoT position with nationwide deployment of new technologies like LTE-M and NB-IoT.”