Espoo, Finland – Nokia today announced it has established the Telecom Infra Project (TIP) together with Facebook, Intel, Deutsche Telekom, EE, Globe, SK Telecom, and other operators, equipment providers, systems integrators, and technology companies from around the world. The overall target of TIP is to accelerate sustainable global growth of high quality, scalable and affordable telecommunications infrastructure by driving innovation in collaboration with the industry.
Nokia provides TIP with both experience and credibility from the mobile communication ecosystem. As a founding member of TIP, Nokia wants to promote transparency and open architecture, and explore new business models to improve people’s lives through better connectivity.
The TIP promise is to simplify network and product architecture to gain higher performance, simpler network operation and increased automation. The industry will benefit from a growing ecosystem that will provide connectivity to places that previously were unconnected.
Nokia’s planned contributions to TIP include publishing an open specification for the operability interface associated with the radio access run time environment, which traditionally is vendor specific. This open interface will allow development of innovative new radio solutions for new market segments, allowing operators to “mix-and-match” between vendors within a given end-to-end-solution.
The open interface will also enable innovation for faster and simpler cell site or node implementations that can be built and deployed by 3rd parties. This gives operators a simpler business model for building coverage where traditional deployments would not be economically feasible. In order to further encourage 3rd party participation, Nokia will provide a program to cross-check compatibility with the open interface.
Pending successful creation of the required TIP Project Groups, Nokia aims to provide an open base station hardware platform, and a reference design and hardware specification of it. The initial specifications are targeted to be available in the first half of 2016, and to be enhanced gradually. Nokia will provide components, modules or a reference platform, as well as complete base stations, to parties that want to build TIP Access Points.
Nokia intends to participate in several TIP Project Groups in order to provide operator-friendly solutions and increased vendor choices.
The contributions of TIP Project Groups are expected to result in the dramatic reduction of overhead associated with providing mobile coverage by simplifying network build-outs. It will be possible for operators, enterprises and other vertical players to build faster and simpler mobile broadband spot coverage in rural, suburban, enterprise, and urban environments compared to using traditional mobile network implementation models.
The scope of the cooperation is not limited to any specific technology, spectrum or cell size, to enable any use cases, bands and cell sizes to be used. The future applications and services require networks to be sliced for different use cases and verticals and requires a wider ecosystem than ever before. The TIP platform is an excellent vehicle to widen the ecosystem.
Henri Tervonen, head of Architecture and Technology, Nokia, said: “The traditional carrier-grade operator model requires a sustainable business case for deploying mobile coverage. The deployment is often time consuming and costly, and some places can be left out of coverage because they lack required traffic and revenue streams. The model suggested by Telecom Infra Project can lower the threshold of deploying coverage and it can be done by 3rd parties. For users, this will mean improved mobile connectivity in places where coverage would otherwise not be feasible, including underground areas, indoors and other black holes in urban coverage, in unconnected rural villages, and in other remote areas.”
Park Jin-hyo, SVP and Head of Network Technology R&D Center, SK Telecom, said: “The telecommunication industry needs a new pace of change. Korea has the world’s highest LTE penetration rate, and is rapidly moving towards 5G. To meet constantly changing customer demands in the upcoming 5G era, we need a new way to revolutionize how the networks are built. It is our belief that TIP cooperation will open up a new possibility in this aspect and SK Telecom is keen on contributing to this project.”
The Telecom Infra Project (TIP) is an engineering-focused initiative driven by operators, infrastructure providers, system integrators, and other technology companies that aims to reimagine the traditional approach to building and deploying telecom network infrastructure.
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