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Vodafone UK and Ericsson Deploy Cloud-Native Dual-Mode 5G Core

Thursday, June 17th, 2021 (8:53 am) - Score 1,752
vodafone mast and logo

Mobile operator Vodafone has today announced that they’re working with strategic supplier Ericsson to deploy a new cloud-native dual-mode (Single Packet) core for their new 5G Standalone (SA) network in the United Kingdom. Until now, the technology had only been deployed on the campus of Coventry University in July 2020.

Most of the early commercial 5G based network deployments are using Non-Standalone (NSA) hardware and systems, which can still deliver impressive mobile broadband speeds but remain aided (and a bit hobbled) by existing 4G infrastructure.

By comparison, Standalone 5G (SA) is the next evolutionary step and reflects a completely new end-to-end 5G network (i.e. 4G services may still exist but SA is no longer dependent upon the existing network), which gives rise to various improvements such as ultra-low latency times (fast), improved mobile broadband speeds, network slicing capabilities and better support for Internet of Things (IoT) devices.

We should add that Vodafone’s deployment of a new dual-mode core, also known as Single Packet Core, will enable them to support 5G Standalone, as well as 5G non-Standalone (NSA) and 4G technology – necessary to ensure a smooth upgrade and compatibility. All of this forms part of the operator’s technology upgrade roadmap for the next 5 years.

Andrea Dona, Chief Network Officer at Vodafone UK, said:

“Ericsson has been one of our most trusted and successful partners for many years, and we are thrilled to be taking this critical step forward together. With this new core delivery, the foundations are being built for our 5G Standalone network, which will enable us to work with customers to deliver innovations that would not be possible otherwise.”

The exact UK rollout plan remains unclear, although it should be noted that most existing Smartphones aren’t currently able to fully support the new 5G SA technology, but the first ones are expected to launch domestically “later this year“.

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By Mark Jackson
Mark is a professional technology writer, IT consultant and computer engineer from Dorset (England), he also founded ISPreview in 1999 and enjoys analysing the latest telecoms and broadband developments. Find me on Twitter, , Facebook and Linkedin.
Leave a Comment
4 Responses
  1. Lucian says:

    WTH is cloud-native? They run it on kubernetes or what? They could’ve skipped the hype mumbo-jumbo.

    1. Mark Jackson says:

      The network operator basically gains more control and flexibility over how they configure or run the network, which can be done remotely. It all feeds into the software defined networking approach. But cloud native covers a lot of different aspects, so it’s a little tricky to explain without writing a whole other article.

  2. Dell Skinner says:

    if your with vodafone get out quick because they will con you like me

  3. Rob says:

    “dual-mode core, also known as Single Packet Core”? I think someone is having a laugh here.

    From what I know of 5g deployment, it used CA TX with multiple bands of 4g and no RX because it didn’t have the capacity so standalone will less?

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