4iG, a growing regional telecoms/IT group in Hungary and the Western Balkans, has joined the O-RAN (Open Radio Access Network) Alliance as a full mobile network operator (MNO) member. The O-RAN industry association provides an open platform for the development and operation of 5G RAN infrastructure, aiming to make radio communications systems more efficient by creating a freely accessible, open development platform, and 4iG says that with O-RAN Alliance’s global network of contacts and knowledge base, the Hungarian ICT group ‘can become the frontrunner of IT telecom convergence and 5G technology innovation, using the capabilities it already has at its disposal.’ O-RAN is a software-centric approach in which vendors supply vendor-neutral tools to system operators, and a common, open platform provides access to any independent development. O-RAN is also aimed at efficiently implementing increasingly widespread IoT/Industry 4.0 solutions.

4iG CEO Peter Fekete commented: ‘We see the technological convergence of IT and telecommunications as an obvious opportunity. IT-telco convergence is a key element of 4iG’s growth strategy …The O-RAN initiative is a technological umbrella over 4iG’s capabilities, as this open innovation platform and shared expertise are applicable and leverageable across all three of our business areas, i.e. IT, telecommunications and defence, together or separately.’

The O-RAN Alliance was established in February 2018 by Deutsche Telekom, AT&T, China Mobile, NTT DOCOMO and Orange Group, and has grown into a global community of MNOs, such as Vodafone Group, Bell Canada, Verizon, US Cellular, China Telecom, Rakuten Mobile, T-Mobile, Dish and 1&1, manufacturers, research and academic institutions working in the RAN field.

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