Nokia has been selected by BT as a 5G RAN supplier. As part of the deal, which will make Nokia BT’s largest infrastructure partner, Nokia will provide equipment and services to evolve BT’s radio access network to 5G.
BT’s Nokia-powered network, which currently includes Greater London, the Midlands and rural locations, will be extended to also cover multiple other towns and cities across the United Kingdom. This enhanced Nokia footprint will support BT’s commitments to the UK government around the use of High Risk Vendors (HRVs) in UK network infrastructure.
Philip Jansen, CEO, BT Group (pictured above) said, “Digital connectivity is critical to the UK’s economic future, creating jobs and underpinning sustainable growth. That’s why BT is making game-changing investments in full fibre and 5G. In a fast-moving and competitive market, it’s critical we make the right technology choices. With this next stage of our successful relationship with Nokia we will continue to lead the rollout of fixed and mobile networks to deliver stand out experiences for customers.”
Nokia will supply its AirScale Single RAN (S-RAN) portfolio for both indoor and outdoor coverage, including 5G RAN, AirScale base stations and Nokia AirScale radio access products. In addition, Nokia will optimise BT’s 2G and 4G networks and work alongside BT on the development of the OpenRAN ecosystem.
Pekka Lundmark, president and CEO, Nokia, added, “I am delighted that BT has extended its partnership with Nokia on 5G RAN, making Nokia BT’s largest infrastructure partner. Our two companies have collaborated for over a quarter of a century in order to deliver best-in-class connectivity to people across the United Kingdom. We are proud to support BT’s 5G network evolution and look forward to working even more closely together in the years to come.”
BT will also use Nokia Software’s ng-SDM and NetAct network management platform to support its network evolution to 5G. These build upon the existing network architecture and provide an immediate cornerstone and single platform for new 5G-based services. Nokia will also provide its Cell Site Gateway product for backhaul connectivity.