Vodafone is partnering with Ericsson to deploy a new cloud-native dual-mode core for its 5G Standalone network in the UK, an important stepping stone in the Vodafone 5G evolution strategy.
The deployment of a dual-mode core, also known as Single Packet Core, will enable 5G Standalone, 5G non-Standalone and 4G technology. The new agreement, which sets out a five-year technology roadmap and builds on an already successful and long-standing relationship, includes Packet Core and signaling network functions and makes Ericsson a key end-to-end 5G network partner for Vodafone in the UK. Vodafone and Ericsson have already delivered an award-winning 5G network in London together, as well as connecting other towns and cities across the UK.
The deployment of Ericsson’s cloud-native 5G Core is a critical milestone for Vodafone to deliver 5G Standalone connectivity services across the UK. Vodafone first deployed 5G Standalone on Ericsson technology at the campus of Coventry University in July 2020. 5G Standalone will power high end next generation use cases and support applications requiring the fastest connectivity, highest data rates and smallest latency demands, as well as network slicing capabilities. Smartphones with support for 5G Standalone are expected to be launched later this year, and Vodafone will be in a unique place to support future capabilities.
Andrea Dona, Chief Network Officer, Vodafone UK, said: “Ericsson has been one of our most trusted and successful partners for many years, and we are thrilled to be taking this critical step forward together. With this new core delivery, the foundations are being built for our 5G Standalone network, which will enable us to work with customers to deliver innovations that would not be possible otherwise.”
Katherine Ainley, CEO, Ericsson UK & Ireland, said: “Our 5G industry leadership means Vodafone is positioned to deliver exceptional results for its customers. We have a deep understanding of Vodafone’s customer and market needs, and with our leading product portfolio, supply chain, field-service expertise and support organization, we are able to deploy speedily at scale and bring exciting new services to the UK market. We are proud to be instrumental in making this happen with Vodafone.”
The power of 5G Standalone
5G Standalone – where all products and solutions are designed to run independently from previous generations of network equipment and technology – will best deliver the high-end benefits of 5G.
Next-generation technology and applications such as virtual reality, augmented reality, ultra-low latency and huge data-handling ability will be enhanced by 5G Standalone – all enabled by the secure network slicing, edge computing and service exposure capabilities of a 5G Standalone core.
Working end-to-end with the 5G Standalone radio network, the solutions are a major catalyst towards making the digital economy and Industry 4.0 a reality.
Vodafone Germany and Ericsson
The partnership with Ericsson in the UK follows an announcement in Germany, where Ericsson will also deploy 5G Core infrastructure. In both markets, Ericsson will support Vodafone’s entire cloud-native 5G Core Standalone for packet core applications.