Telus and Samsung to build Canada’s first 5G Virtualized, Open RAN network

Telus says its expanded collaboration with Samsung will improve its network's performance and energy efficiency

Telus and Samsung have announced a partnership to build Canada’s first commercial virtualized and open radio access network (RAN).

Telus says Samsung’s latest RAN solutions offer next-generation technology that enhances performance, flexibility, energy efficiency and the automation of its network. The companies say they will expand their collaboration and implement the technology not just in new infrastructure deployments but also in existing infrastructure across Canada. Telus selected Samsung as its 5G network vendor in 2020.

Open RAN allows Telus to adapt to a multi-vendor ecosystem to acquire components that meet the company’s needs. The virtualized open radio access network (vRAN) also allows the company to use software instead of hardware, giving faster access to the latest technologies to improve its network.

“This is a very exciting milestone for Telus and the industry overall, as we now have the most flexible way to offer a diversified set of services to Canadians, unlocking new levels of mobile experiences,” Nazim Benhadid, chief technology officer at Telus, said in a press release. “We are proud to be the first Canadian telecommunications company to integrate this cutting-edge technology, together with Samsung and our other partners.”

The companies say OpenRAN and vRAN rollout have been tested in select markets in Canada with “excellent results.” Telus says the results prove the carrier-grade performance and reliability of Samsung’s vRAN using the company’s latest vRAN 3.0 solution for 4G and 5G.

The technology will deployed commercially in the first half of this year, and a large-scale network rollout is expected to begin in mid-2024.

Telus and Samsung say implementing Open RAN and vRAN technology will elevate the capabilities of Telus’ 4G and 5G network services and provide customers with the best possible experience.

Image credit: Shutterstock

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