Proving the Business Case for the Internet of Things

Nokia slicing supports 4G and 5G connectivity

Steve Rogerson
March 5, 2020



Nokia has announced end-to-end slicing network functionality that will support connectivity from 4G and 5G devices over the sliced network to applications running in private and public clouds; it will be available this summer.
 
The technology lets operators start building their network slicing business today with LTE and 5G NR (New Radio). The slicing capability can be deployed via a software upgrade into existing LTE and 5G non-standalone networks and subsequently 5G standalone networks. The slicing continuity between LTE and 5G NR allows operators to increase their network coverage for new mobile connectivity services.
 
“Working closely with our customers to develop new technologies and business opportunities is hugely important to Nokia,” said Tommi Uitto, president of mobile networks at Nokia. “4G and 5G slicing enables multiple new use cases which operators can start building now to create new revenue streams.”
 
It provides sliced mobile broadband connectivity from device to radio, transport, core, all the way to applications in private and public networks and the cloud. The user and service-aware slicing functionality has been introduced to Nokia radio access products for the first time and is also supported in Nokia transport and core products with control, management and assurance systems. It supports all 4G and 5G devices and works in a multi-vendor environment.
 
The slicing technology is being developed in collaboration with operators A1 and Telia.
 
“It has been really exciting to be the first operator to conduct a live test of Nokia’s new network slicing feature,” said Jari Collin, chief technology officer at Telia Finland. “As a 5G frontrunner in business customer pilots, we know that this will be a key functionality that will deliver many of the promises our customers are waiting for. With slicing, we can efficiently use our spectrum to deliver seamless and reliable connectivity and also strengthen our leading IoT position with nationwide deployment of new technologies like LTE-M and NB-IoT.”
 
It delivers value and business opportunities for enterprises, as well as for the IoT, fixed wireless access, applications and content related services. It enables mobile end-to-end services with logical connections, security, quality and traffic management with a seamless service continuity across 4G and 5G networks. Private wireless slicing also opens up network functionalities for different applications, such as surveillance and automation.
 
Nokia is already trialling live 4G and 5G slicing use cases with customers powered by a software defined network radio slice controller as well as a transport slice controller. The trial includes a Nokia cloud packet core slice orchestrator to support network deployment automation as well as SD-WAN software providing a managed 4G and 5G network slice to private and public cloud services. Nokia assurance systems are used to verify per slice KPIs as a part of its E2E service orchestration.
 
“We are proud to be among the first operators worldwide who successfully demonstrated end-to-end network slicing, spanning the core, transport and radio over our 4G as well as 5G networks,” said Alexander Kuchar, director at A1 Telekom Austria. “For our business customers, it will be a huge advantage to be able to benefit from dedicated mobile communication services, exclusive capacities, strong data security and transmission with high reliability and low latency by integrating A1’s highly reliable and excellent infrastructure and services offering into their internal processes. Network slicing in 4G and extended in 5G will play a key role in allowing A1 to develop new market segments and revenue streams.”