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Vodafone switches on first 5G OpenRAN site

Megan Robinson
January 19, 2022

Vodafone has supported the OpenRAN ecosystem since its conception in 2016 and actively uses OpenRAN across the UK.

Vodafone has announced it has switched on the UK’s first OpenRAN site to carry live 5G traffic located in Bath.

This is the first of 2,500 5G and 4G OpenRAN sites across Europe that Vodafone has committed to by 2027, and supports the Government’s plan to speed up development of the OpenRAN ecosystem.

Vodafone UK chief network officer Andrea Dona said: “This is the beginning of a new chapter for the mobile industry.

“OpenRAN as a concept is only five years old, and we’re already fundamentally changing how we deploy connectivity infrastructure. This is a watershed moment in the telecoms industry, and a catalyst for change and evolution.”

The site is delivered in partnership with Samsung, Wind River, Dell, Intel, Keysight Technologies and Capgemini Engineering. 

Samsung will deploy its virtualised Radio Access (vRAN) Solutions and 5G radio units, and from mid-2022, Samsung and NEC will provide OpenRAN 4G and 5G antennas.

Samsung Electronics and Samsung Networks Europe head Thomas Riedel said: “This will help deliver the benefits of our carrier-grade 5G vRAN solutions to millions of Vodafone UK customers. 

“Through our accumulated commercial 5G vRAN experience with leading operators across major markets globally, we look forward to pushing the boundaries of technological innovation and supporting the 5G journey across Europe.”

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