Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE) has announced a new portfolio of as-a-service offerings to help telecommunications companies build and deploy open 5G networks. The portfolio will accelerate telcos’ path to revenue growth with 5G and enable them to rapidly deploy 5G services to deliver dynamic, personalized, and real-time experiences to employees, customers and citizens.
HPE’s edge-to-cloud, platform as-a-service strategy is uniquely positioned to help telcos capitalize on the 5G opportunity, by leveraging a cloud-native software stack for 5G core, optimized telco core and edge infrastructure blueprints, and Wi-Fi 6 enabled services. Built on open and interoperable platforms combined with carrier grade infrastructure and modular software components, the portfolio of offerings allows telcos to incorporate more automation, become more agile, and deploy new 5G services faster across the telco core, the telco edge and into the enterprise.
At the telco core – a new HPE 5G Core Stack. This open, cloud-native, container-based software stack provides telco customers with the core network capabilities required to rapidly deliver new 5G services to subscribers and enterprise customers.
At the telco edge – HPE continues to innovate with the most dense, ruggedized general purpose platform enabling Virtual Radio Access Networks (vRAN) and Multi-access Edge Computing (MEC). These purpose built offerings from HPE provide telcos with an IT service environment at the cellular network edge.
At the enterprise edge – innovative Aruba Central services, including Air Pass Wi‑Fi/5G roaming and Air Slice SLA management. These services help telcos extend the 5G footprint to the enterprise edge – where people, devices and things interact to drive positive business outcomes – by allowing seamless access to Wi-Fi connected users and IoT devices.
Infrastructure delivered as-a-service with HPE GreenLake – available via a pay-as-you-go, managed services and elastic model, these offerings provide telcos with an attractive, fast ramp for rolling out 5G services by enabling them to reduce upfront capital investments and reduce risk by leveraging specialized and proven telco and enterprise edge hardware and software.
“Openness is essential to the evolutionary nature of 5G and with HPE 5G Core Stack telcos can reduce operational costs, deploy features faster and keep themselves open to multiple networks and technologies while avoiding being locked-in to a single vendor approach,” said Phil Mottram, VP and GM of the Communications and Media Solutions business unit at HPE.
“HPE has one of the broadest 5G portfolios in the market and is uniquely positioned to help telcos build an open multi-vendor 5G core, optimize the edge with vRAN, and deliver connectivity and new compute services to the enterprise using MEC and Wi-Fi 6.”
5G promises to revolutionize the technology landscape, but the journey to pervasive 5G is in its early stages. To fully realize the benefits and power of 5G, a standalone 5G core needs to be combined with the nascent 5G radio access networks.
Previous generation networks have often depended on proprietary vertically integrated systems from a single vendor, but 5G offers the opportunity to move to open, cloud-native platforms that utilize commercial off-the-shelf servers along with modular software components from different vendors, allowing telcos to monetize innovative new 5G services faster.
At the edge of the telco network, legacy network infrastructure in the RAN also uses proprietary network technology that results in high operational costs and limited agility. Furthermore, the higher frequencies of 5G have issues penetrating buildings, therefore telcos will need to be able to utilize both 5G RAN and Wi-Fi 6 networks in the enterprise in order to provide uninterrupted service to their customers as they enter shopping malls, campuses and office buildings.
HPE’s open 5G portfolio offers the solution to these 5G challenges at the core, at the edge, and in the enterprise and promises to unleash the potential of 5G, enabling a host of new applications across a range of industries, including automotive, education, financial services, government, manufacturing and utilities.
These edge-to-cloud 5G-ready technologies are available on a pay-as-you-go or subscription basis via HPE GreenLake to help accelerate the rollout of 5G infrastructure without upfront capital outlays and to help manage the uncertainty of timing and sizing their 5G deployments. With HPE GreenLake, telcos can grow and expand their network as new users come online and pay monthly based on measured utilization. Through HPE GreenLake, the 5G infrastructure can be operated on behalf of the customer to free up resources to focus on innovation at the network and enterprise edge.
Accelerating 5G adoption with a cloud-native 5G core software stack
The true value of 5G can only be realized when radio access networks are combined with a 5G core network. This will enable holistic management, data sharing, and slicing into virtual 5G networks with dedicated usage and characteristics. The promise of 5G will be unleashed through open, modern platforms, interoperable with existing networks to allow telcos to bring new 5G services to the market quickly while bridging from previous generation networks.
HPE 5G Core Stack is a cloud-native, containerized 5G core network software stack that accelerates the journey to new 5G revenue streams, seamlessly integrates with previous generation networks and is future-ready for upcoming advancements in 5G standards. The HPE 5G Core Stack will be available as an integrated software and hardware platform, based on validated HPE Telco core and edge blueprints, and supported within HPE GreenLake. By deploying a truly open, cloud-native 5G core, telcos can swap out network functions as needed, enabling them to respond to market developments and avoid vendor lock-in.
Virtualizing RAN and operationalizing edge compute
To streamline new services at the telco edge, HPE continues to innovate at the 5G edge and is developing new infrastructure solutions designed to power both vRAN and MEC solutions at the telco edge or on the enterprise edge. At the boundary between the telco and enterprise edge, telcos need to be able to offer new edge compute services, and enterprises need an efficient way to consume them.
Extending 5G experience to enterprise with Wi-Fi 6
Today, when subscribers enter a building and manually switch to the enterprise Wi-Fi network to maintain high-performance connectivity inside, subscriber access and visibility can be lost, limiting the telco operators’ ability to deliver services.
Using Passpoint technology and the new Aruba Air Pass service, cellular subscribers can now securely and automatically roam onto participating Aruba enterprise customer Wi-Fi networks using their SIM credentials and be visible to mobile network operators. This technology extends the 5G footprint into the enterprise while allowing telcos access to Wi-Fi connected users and IoT devices, and is essential for maintaining high service levels and the ability to create and monetize new services.
HPE will partner to accelerate opportunities building on Aruba Air Pass and Air Slice to further enhance the integration of the network and customer edges by enabling subscribers to seamlessly roam from 5G cellular to Wi-Fi networks along with guaranteed quality of service, all cloud-managed by Aruba Central. Aruba Central is a unified network operations, assurance and security platform that simplifies the deployment, management and service assurance of wireless, wired and SD-WAN environments.
“5G has the potential to revolutionize our digital lives and the combination of 5G and Wi-Fi 6 presents telcos with an unlimited array of possibilities for offering subscribers new and compelling services that can transform the user experience,” said Keerti Melkote, president of Intelligent Edge at HPE and founder of Aruba Networks. “With a broad portfolio of innovations that span from the telco core to the enterprise edge, HPE is the only platform as-a-service company that can deliver the infrastructure, software solutions and the technical expertise to support global telcos in their quest to fully realize the promise of 5G.”