Zain Kuwait has completed the first live trial of the Open and Virtual Radio Access Network (Open cRAN).
This was implemented in collaboration with both Mavenir, a network software provider building the future of networks with cloud-native software that runs on any cloud and transforms the way the world connects, and Masiya, a system integrator in the Middle East.
Mavenir, in partnership with Masiya, Intel and Dell successfully deployed Mavenir Radios Units (RU), fully containerised Distributed Units (DUs) and Central Units (CUs) software on Mavenir’s Webscale Platform (MWP) acting as a CaaS / PaaS layer running on commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) hardware from Intel and Dell.
Commenting on the development, Nawaf Al Gharabally, Zain Group & Zain Kuwait Chief Technology Officer said: “As a pioneer of mobile telecommunications playing a leading role in the digital transformation vision of the region, Zain is consistently seeking technologies that contribute to building a strong sustainable future for Kuwait and the markets we proudly serve. This Open cRAN trial empowers Zain with better understanding and practice experience on new technical trends for further development, that will enable us to continue offering distinct mobile services to our valued customers.”
Dr Virtyt Koshi, SVP, GM EMEA, Mavenir, added: “We are delighted to work with Zain Group on delivering Cloud Native Open cRAN in Kuwait City. We have deployed open interface Radio Units, fully containerized 4G and 5G RAN software functions on Kubernetes-based PaaS/CaaS and COTS hardware, connected through the existing Core network. Digital cloud-based solutions with open interfaces bring an opportunity for more efficient and faster deployment, new consumer and enterprise offerings, while minimizing capex investment and opex in Radio networks going forward.”
Ibrahim AlZamel, Chief Operating Officer of Masiya, stated: “As a long-time selected partner of Zain for over 21 years, we are pleased to be part of this regional breakthrough. Masiya launched the first MMSC back in 2001 in the Middle East and we are pleased to be a cornerstone in trialling the first Open cRAN in the region with Zain.”
The benefit of Open cRAN for Zain Group in Kuwait will be widespread, as they will receive the latest products and services at a faster time to market while using the latest mobile access networks. Moreover, this technology will enhance Zain’s cloud offerings and brings Artificial Intelligence (AI) to the forefront.