Nokia and Mavenir completed an interoperability test which they claimed proved they were working on creating an open RAN ecosystem for operators.

The test featured Nokia’s baseband distributed unit (DU) and centralised unit (CU), and an open RAN radio unit (O-RU) from Mavenir using the O-RAN Alliance’s 7-2x fronthaul interface.

Mavenir’s CBRS RU and Nokia’s AirScale baseband were evaluated for interoperability, with the pair employing four-component carrier aggregation on TDD and FDD spectrum in a standalone 5G configuration.

AvidThink founder and principal Roy Chua told Mobile World Live that Nokia has played up its commitment to a more open ecosystem, but noted the news was issued by the Finnish vendor and not Mavenir.

“Typically, a smaller company will be all over themselves trying to drive a press release that mentions a larger competitor,” he stated. “Not in this case, which is why I think this benefits Nokia more than Mavenir.”

He noted Mavenir’s strength is its mobile core and RAN stacks, adding CBRS RU is less of a strategic value for the vendor and therefore a less likely threat to Nokia’s version in large network deployments.

Chua added the test was a departure from Mavenir’s usual stance that large industry vendors similar to Ericsson and Nokia did not want to collaborate with open RAN companies.

“Nevertheless, this is still a win for open RAN, the O-RAN Alliance and the overall ecosystem.”

Nokia stated it has now integrated its DU with four O-RU providers, which Chua noted included Fujitsu as part of a commercial rollout with Deutsche Telekom.

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