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Huawei predicts “all cloud” mobile networks and previews indoor small cell

Huawei Cloud

© Huawei

  • Launches CloudAIR for the “cloudification” of the air interface
  • Completes the vendor’s suite of mobile cloud solutions
  • Launches LampSite 3.0 indoor small cell portfolio
  • Supports 240MHz bandwidth and operator sharing

It’s a cloudy future for mobile, but Huawei detects a silver lining. Speaking at the vendor’s annual Global Mobile Broadband Forum event in Tokyo earlier today, Huawei unveiled an integrated suite of solutions to enable the full “cloudification” of wireless networks. This ERA solution includes three different variants: one for cloud-based core networks (CloudEdge – which launched in 2014), cloud-based radio access networks (CloudRAN – which was announced back in April), and cloud-based air interface (CloudAIR – today’s new addition).

Configuring a single RAN to support vastly different requirements for data rates (ranging from low kbit/s to multiple Gbit/s) and latency (with seconds now being too long for many new applications, leading to the need for millisecond latencies) is no easy task for operators.

“In order to face this challenge, a modern network needs efficient resource utilization, on-demand module deployment, and agile service provisioning if it hopes to achieve long-term development,” said Edward Deng, President of Huawei Wireless Solution, “and building a cloud-based network is the only way to make that happen.”

CloudEdge has been in operation for a couple of years now, with the CloudRAN solution expected to be commercially deployed in Q3 of 2017, having passed business verification tests in China, Italy, South Korea and Japan. The new CloudAIR looks to further support efficient, on-demand and agile network deployment for mobile operators.

“We launched the CloudAIR solution to help reshape air interface,” said Deng. “Our focus is on improving the efficiency of air interface, enabling operators to deploy services more flexibly and, of course, enhancing user experience. CloudAIR is designed to enable more efficient sharing of air interface resources like spectrum, power, and channels.”

Huawei believes that spectrum cloudification allows different radio access technologies (RATs) to share the same spectrum, dynamically allocating spectrum resources based on fluctuations in traffic. This maximises spectral efficiency and helps get new RATs online faster to ensure more immediate coverage. It also prevents legacy terminals from occupying valuable spectrum for long periods of time.

The solution also supports AI-based scheduling to enable any received signals to be recognised as available multi-path resources. This should facilitate better site selection and provide an improved user experience.

Keep it small

Huawei today also launched its next generation indoor mobile broadband solution, called LampSite 3.0. Based on – you guessed it – a CloudRAN unified architecture, the latest LampSite small cells come in either a Pro or Lite version to cover various sizes of indoor deployments.

LampSite 3.0 Pro provides up to 240MHz full bandwidth capability, supports multi-operator sharing scenarios with more flexible multi-carrier aggregation, distributed MIMO, 256QAM and should provide a smooth evolution path to 5G. The Lite version features centralised resource coordination and automated service provisioning, enabling venue owners to deploy a network by themselves.

“LampSite3.0 includes a large amount of Huawei’s technology innovations in the fields of indoor mobile broadband,” said Zhou Yuefeng, CMO of Huawei's Wireless Network Product Line. “It helps global operators to quickly create all-scenario indoor digital infrastructure. It enables digital technology for more industries to break the boundaries of the mobile communications industry, and to enable more industry partners to share indoor digital economic dividends.”

Huawei expects LampSite 3.0 to be available globally in the second half of 2017.

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