5G network-in-a-box launched at DSP Leaders World Forum

  • TelecomTV’s DSP Leaders World Forum 2024 is underway in Windsor, UK
  • The first keynote speech was given by Vodafone’s network architecture director, Yago Tenorio
  • He used his speech about industry innovation to announce the commercial launch of the mobile network-in-a-box product that Vodafone has been developing with industry partners

WINDSOR, UK – DSP Leaders World Forum 2024 – The Open RAN network-in-a-box product co-developed by Vodafone and partners that was first unveiled as a prototype in early 2023 was officially launched here today by Yago Tenorio, Vodafone fellow and network architecture director at the operator (pictured above holding the product aloft).

Tenorio floated the concept of the network-in-a-box product in February 2023: Essentially, the product is a complete mobile network in a single box, comprising a software-defined radio (SDR) chipset developed by Lime Microsystems and a Raspberry Pi 4 personal computer that is capable of running any core software stack and radio access network (RAN) software that is suitably sized for a small network deployment, such as a private wireless network or a mobile network extension. 

There was great initial interest from the enterprise community, according to Tenorio, and at this year’s MWC show in Barcelona he said it would be available to buy in June – see Vodafone’s Open RAN network-in-a-box to launch in June.

And he was as good as his word, telling the in-person and online audience attending the DSP Leaders World Forum here today during his opening address for the ‘Directing and accelerating network innovation’ session that the product is now commercially available via the Lime Microsystems website.  

The product, which currently has the official name LimeNET Micro 2.0, is helping to “democratise the private 5G mobile network,” stated Tenorio, who explained the product can work in any network, on any spectrum band, for any mobile service (from 2G to 5G). “Eventually, this will be available at the same kind of price as a Wi-Fi router,” he claimed. 

As part of his opening address, Tenorio stated it was important for telecom companies to figure out when it is best to innovate internally and when it’s best to innovate collaboratively for the good of the industry in general: The mobile network-in-a-box is an example of broad industry collaboration to create something that can be used by anyone and isn’t just tied to a single operator’s network.   

At the same time, he noted, the development of the LimeNET product was only possible because of initial internal R&D processes undertaken by Vodafone in helping to develop software-defined networking capabilities. 

- Ray Le Maistre, Editorial Director, TelecomTV

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