Athonet tells enterprises to ‘bring your own’ private 5G RAN
Private network specialist Athonet is telling enterprises to ‘bring your own RAN’ with the introduction of a facility in its network management system to select from a combination of radio products according to “the needs of the mix of applications” in their edge environments.
The new scheme, a play on the bring-your-own-device (BYOD) initiative that has swept the workplace, enabling staff to use their personal phones on company networks, allows enterprises to choose their own radio access network (RAN) solution, and also to run different radios concurrently in their private networks. Their selections and selection-settings can be managed in Athonet’s cloud-based edge-network dashboard.
The BYORAN offer positions Athonet, providing core networking equipment for private LTE and 5G setups, as technology agnostic, highlighting its ease and familiarity with sundry RAN solutions. It encourages enterprises to look more widely than legacy LTE and 5G RAN providers, to identify RAN solutions most suitable for their ends. Implicitly, it also suggests the real mastery with private networks is retained in the core, as the ‘brain’ of the operations — and not in the radio, as Nokia has recently claimed in these pages.
A statement said: “For example, a different radio may be used indoor compared to outdoor to hit the required coverage and performance targets. IT managers can also view all the radios in a single dashboard without logging in/out of different management platforms. Many radio vendors have already been tested for interoperability and their respective management tools integrated into the portal. The program is open to all radio vendors.”
It continued: “The advantage of this solution is the management of the entire system can always be accessed from a single point with a single pane of glass regardless if the core is deployed as a single or multiple instance or fully in the cloud, on premise, or as a hybrid architecture.”
Martin Jensen, vice president of solution architecture at Athonet, remarked: “Athonet is changing the way private networks are built and managed with this new private network management dashboard which can be located adjacent to the core on premise or hosted in the cloud. All radios are connected to a core. We are taking all the traffic connected to our core and consolidating the data so you have a ‘single pane of glass’ to get all information from all radios and core elements. Now these radios are not just connected, but easily managed in a centralized place.”
A press statement quoted analyst group Mobile Experts, which predicts the total private LTE/5G market opportunity over the next six years will exceed $45 billion, including radio componentry and services. Kyung Mun, principal analyst at Mobile Experts, stated: “Providing options in how private networks are deployed and managed will be a key to this growth and adoption. Organizations are looking at best-of-breed but need integrated private LTE and 5G solutions, which makes the concept of BYORAN appealing.”