Network operators rely on Ericsson for the 5G core network


Vodafone relies on the Swedish supplier Ericsson for its core network. Chinese suppliers such as Huawei are not taken into account here either.

When building 5G data centers for data transmission, Chinese suppliers such as Huawei and ZTE are left out in Germany. Vodafone has now announced a contract for the so-called core network with the Swedish company Ericsson, the term is five years. The other two German network operators Telefónica and Deutsche Telekom also do not rely on Huawei.

In the antenna network, which only includes the antennas and does not contain any data processing, things look different: Vodafone and Deutsche Telekom work here with Ericsson and Huawei, Telefónica has contracts with Nokia and Huawei.

After a long political debate about security concerns against Huawei and other technology groups from China, the federal government set strict certification requirements last year. After that, Chinese providers such as Huawei and ZTE can also participate in the 5G expansion. When it comes to certification by German authorities, however, there is a kind of political veto right. In the telecommunications industry, this was perceived as a factor of uncertainty for company plans.

Vodafone: Ericsson delivers the best service

Vodafone emphasizes that the decision in favor of Ericsson was made because the Swedish provider offers the best service. It is also pointed out that they have been working with Ericsson for a long time. According to reports, the Finnish company Nokia was shortlisted alongside other manufacturers.

Technology from Huawei and Ericsson is installed in the Vodafone 5G antenna network. This part of the network is considered to be less critical because data is only forwarded here and not processed. However, with 5G, the clear local separation between the core network and the antenna network is partially eliminated. Because with “Mobile Edge Computing” mini-computers are used that hang not far from the antennas, for example in factories. This should enable real-time communication: data is no longer sent to remote data centers, but for data processing on site.

This is important for “campus networks” in industry, which means that they have shielded 5G mobile communications. Functionally, such mini-computers are part of the core network, according to Vodafone. The agreement with Ericsson only affects the public core network, i.e. the data centers. It has not yet been decided whether Vodafone will do without Huawei in “Mobile Edge Computing”: So far, Edge Computing has only existed on a project basis, in most cases technology from Ericsson is used, says a Vodafone spokesman. There are a large number of providers in this segment.

Competitors take a similar route

The competitors have taken a similar course. Telefónica with its brand O2 installs technology from Ericsson in the core network as well as systems from Huawei and Nokia in the antenna network. According to its own information, Deutsche Telekom relies “on European and American manufacturers” for the core network and on Ericsson and Huawei for the antenna network. A Telekom spokesman justified the choice of suppliers for the antenna network with the fact that with the energy-saving SRAN technology, 5G components can only be added to 4G components from the same manufacturer.

As the fourth mobile network operator, United Internet is in the starting blocks with its subsidiary 1 & 1. The “Welt am Sonntag” had recently told CEO Ralph Dommermuth that the new network was being planned without Chinese providers.


Source: com! professional by www.com-magazin.de.

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