Wind River, Intel Collaborate on Leading 5G vRAN Solution for FlexRAN


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Wind River®, a global leader in delivering software for intelligent systems, announced that the companies are jointly developing a 5G vRAN solution that integrates Intel® FlexRAN reference software for systems fueled by 3rd Gen Intel® Xeon® Scalable processors with built-in AI acceleration, and also features Intel® Ethernet 800 Network Adapters and the Intel vRAN Dedicated Accelerator ACC100 in concert with Wind River Studio. The collaboration will further expand on these innovations by optimizing new capabilities delivered with future next-generation Intel Xeon Scalable processors (Sapphire Rapids). The joint solution builds on work by Intel and Wind River on Verizon’s 5G milestone to complete the world’s first end-to-end fully virtualized 5G data session.

Wind River Studio provides a cloud-native platform for the development, deployment, operations, and servicing of mission-critical intelligent systems. Its cloud infrastructure capabilities include a fully cloud-native, Kubernetes container-based architecture based on the StarlingX open source project for the deployment and management of distributed edge networks at scale. With an out-of-the-box, optimized, ultra-low-latency, small-footprint infrastructure, Studio offers operators the flexibility to grow new business and further improve total cost of ownership. Intel FlexRAN is a vRAN reference implementation for virtualized cloud-enabled radio access networks.

With 5G driving a shift to cloud-native approaches, operators are pursuing vRAN for greater agility. They are optimistic about the potential of vRAN as an anchor tenant for far-edge cloud and eager to move beyond past implementation challenges. According to a Heavy Reading study, operators have cited the following as typical key challenges for vRAN: systems integration (58% of responses), operational complexity of multi-vendor vRAN (46%), and edge cloud server performance (36%).1

Prospective customers and vRAN solution providers will be able to review evaluation packages consisting of Intel FlexRAN reference software pre-integrated with Wind River Studio to simplify and accelerate customer trials and deployments of 5G vRAN. This offering expands upon the recently introduced Intel Select Solutions for Virtual Radio Access Network (vRAN) on Wind River Studio.

“As 5G opens up new opportunities across industries, there will be an increasing need to put greater intelligence and compute to the edges of the network, where new use cases evolve and thrive. As such, operators must adopt a low-latency far-edge cloud architecture to enable these new use cases in an intelligent, AI-first world,” said Kevin Dallas, president and CEO at Wind River. “Together with Intel, we are providing a best-in-class differentiated solution to help customers deliver on high-reliability, ultra-low-latency, and highly efficient offerings for their next-generation networks.”

“As operators realize the benefits and embrace a virtualized, software-defined architecture, our products, ecosystem, and years of experience help accelerate this shift to flexible, agile networks,” said Dan Rodriguez, Intel corporate vice president and general manager, Network Platforms Group. “Working closely with innovators like Wind River, we offer operators a path to fast-track successful vRAN deployments with validated hardware and software that can accelerate their 5G objectives.”

Wind River is a leader in the early 5G landscape, powering 5G RAN deployments, and Wind River Studio capabilities address operators’ complex challenges in deploying and managing a physically distributed, ultra-low-latency cloud-native infrastructure.

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