Telecom operators in India have started working on 5G network from quite some time and recently, Airtel partnered with Nokia to prepare for 5G networks. On similar lines, now Airtel has partnered with IBM and Red Hat to build 5G Ready Cloud Network.
Airtel will build its next-generation core network, analytical tools and new consumer and enterprise services on top of this cloud platform based on open standards. The selection of IBM and Red Hat is aimed to make the network cloud more flexible, efficient, and future-ready to support core operations and enable new digital services. Airtel’s plan is to adopt an open cloud architecture that makes use of Red Hat OpenStack Platform for all network workloads and for newer containerized workloads, the company is planning to use Red Hat OpenShift.
The company aims to achieve improvement in time-to-market of services, reduction in operating expenses and reduced capital expenses. Airtel’s network cloud is embedded with AI and is designed to facilitate automation in onboarding and improve monitoring and predictive capabilities for different services from network equipment providers.
Furthermore, it is expected to help enable new revenue streams with the on-boarding of third-party services including gaming, remote media production and enterprise services.
Commenting on this, Randeep Sekhon, CTO, Bharti Airtel said:
As part of our endeavour to build a 5G ready network for India’s requirements, we are pleased to collaborate with IBM and Red Hat in our cloud journey. Our goal with this powerful, seamless horizontal approach is to make our network future-ready and enable Airtel to efficiently serve the massive surge in data consumption. The hybrid cloud architecture will resonate with our customer-obsession by providing improved flexibility, network stability and performance and bringing agility and automation in our network operations.
Steve Canepa, Global Managing Director, Communications Sector and Worldwide Head of Telecommunications, Media & Entertainment Industry, IBM said:
Through its collaboration with IBM and Red Hat, Airtel will be building a modern, innovative and more responsive network infused with automation and AI, that will provide the consistency and agility needed for today’s rapidly changing marketplace. IBM is a valued collaborator to many of the world’s largest and most innovative communications service providers like Airtel as they transform their networks into open and secure hybrid multi-cloud platforms and prepare for the 5G and edge computing era.