SoftBank Corp started field trials of 5G multi-access edge computing (MEC) using segment routing IPv6 mobile user plane (SRv6 MUP) technology, claiming the set-up delivers high-speed and low-latency applications which are easier to configure.

The operator stated while MEC can significantly reduce latency by deploying application servers closer to mobile devices, without SRv6 MUP the design, construction and operation of the overall system can become complicated due to the addition of mobile-specific switches. 

SoftBank’s trials aim to enable communication between mobile devices and MEC servers without the need for the switches. 

Applications running on the MEC-SRv6 MUP combo are more cost-effective than traditional mobile networks, SoftBank said.

The tests also are designed to verify a distributed execution platform using the Elixir programming language. The platform was developed by an R&D initiative under the Beyond 5G Promotion Consortium and “enables the seamless execution of applications in optimal locations, regardless of the complexity” of the cloud, MEC and mobile device set-up, SoftBank wrote.

“By providing the shortest path to 5G MEC based on the location of mobile devices”, SoftBank stated “SRv6 MUP and the…distributed execution platform will enable application developers to easily provide low-latency services to mobile devices without having to consider the geographical location” of the MEC.

The operator said it will deploy the platform at its newly established 5G MEC base in the Kyushu region of Japan.

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