Rakuten Taps Nokia to Power Reconfigurable Photonic Mesh Mobile Backhaul

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Nokia has announced that Rakuten Mobile will deploy the Nokia 1830 Photonic Service Switch to power its reconfigurable photonic mesh mobile backhaul network.

Rakuten Mobile, Japan’s newest mobile carrier, is set to launch the world’s first end-to-end fully virtualized cloud-native 5G mobile network.

The deployment of Nokia’s coherent and optical component technologies will enable Rakuten Mobile to easily and flexibly grow its network bandwidth for the rapid rollout of 4G and 5G services.

The mobile network will be built upon a nationwide optical infrastructure covering all 47 prefectures throughout Japan and supporting backhaul and data center interconnect (DCI) applications.

Nokia’s wavelength routing technology will be used in both the long-haul and metro optical networks, creating a photonic mesh – the first of its kind for a mobile backhaul network. This will enable Rakuten Mobile to support surging mobile data traffic and a new generation of innovative customer services.

Nokia’s platforms are specifically engineered for the space and power constraints of mobile backhaul and edge computing networks, making them ideally suited to provide transport for Rakuten Mobile’s planned edge data centers.

Rakuten Mobile’s backbone network will be optimized for maximum capacity and lowest cost per bit with Nokia’s Photonic Service Engine 3 (PSE-3) super coherent chipset and C+L Ultra-Wideband wavelength routing.

Nokia and Rakuten Mobile previously announced they are working together to enable the operator’s implementation of a fully automated operations environment for the 5G era. Nokia will operate Rakuten Mobile’s virtualized core network to manage total cost of ownership.

Tareq Amin, CTO, Rakuten Mobile, Inc., said: “Rakuten Mobile is creating the world’s first end-to-end fully virtualized cloud-native mobile network, delivering unprecedented network agility and disruptive economics to end users. Nokia’s Photonic Service Engine 3 coherent chipset and integrated ROADM technology enables us to achieve unprecedented levels of integration and performance building the mobile network for 4G and 5G.”

Sam Bucci, Head of Optical Networking at Nokia, said: “The introduction of 5G will require a network that can support dramatic increases in bandwidth in a dynamic fashion. Nokia is proud and excited to partner with Rakuten Mobile to build a fully reconfigurable photonic mesh network to meet the 5G networking challenge at the lowest total cost of ownership.”


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