Aramco Digital and Intel to establish Saudi Arabia’s first Open RAN development centre

Aramco Digital and Intel to establish Saudi Arabia’s first Open RAN development centre Duncan is an award-winning editor with more than 20 years experience in journalism. Having launched his tech journalism career as editor of Arabian Computer News in Dubai, he has since edited an array of tech and digital marketing publications, including Computer Business Review, TechWeekEurope, Figaro Digital, Digit and Marketing Gazette.


Aramco Digital and Intel plan to establish Saudi Arabia’s inaugural Open RAN (Radio Access Network) Development Center.

The facility is expected to drive innovation, foster technological advancements and contribute to the digital transformation landscape in the Kingdom.

The collaborative effort aims to accelerate the development and deployment of Open RAN technologies, helping to enable the Kingdom to build robust and agile telecommunication infrastructure focused on accelerating digitization across industries. This collaboration aims to align with Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030, which focuses on technological advancements and economic diversification.

Open RAN, an evolving paradigm in wireless network architecture, allows for greater flexibility, interoperability and innovation. Aramco Digital brings a deep understanding of the development needs and ambitions of the Kingdom and the opportunities for Open RAN technology deployment, along with a unique perspective of the Kingdom’s economic landscape. Intel, a pioneer in computing and communication technologies, brings its expertise in Open RAN technologies to the collaboration.

Highlights of the collaboration:

1. Innovation Hub: The Open RAN Development Center aims to serve as an innovation hub, fostering collaboration between Aramco Digital and Intel engineers, researchers and industry experts.

2. Local Talent Development: The centre aims to contribute to the development of local talent by providing training and hands-on experience in the rapidly evolving field of Open RAN and Edge computing technology.

3. Economic Impact: The collaboration aims to contribute to the local economy through technology-driven initiatives, aligning with the broader objectives of Vision 2030.

4. Global Collaboration: The collaboration on Open RAN between Aramco Digital and Intel is expected to extend beyond borders, connecting Saudi Arabia to the global landscape of Open RAN and Edge development and deployment.

Aramco Digital’s CEO, Tareq Amin, said: “This collaboration is a testament to our commitment to helping drive innovation in the Kingdom. The Open RAN Development Center is expected to be a catalyst for digital evolution, providing a platform for collaboration, skill development and the creation of a vibrant technology ecosystem. At the heart of this collaboration is the creation of a vibrant pool of local capabilities for advanced 5G and future 6G technologies.”

Sachin Katti, Intel senior VP and general manager of the Network and Edge Group, said: “We are pleased to collaborate on Open RAN with Aramco Digital and to combine Intel’s technological prowess in network and edge computing and software with the local insights and industry leadership of Aramco Digital. Together, we aim to accelerate the deployment of edge-native Open RAN solutions in Saudi Arabia and beyond.”

The Open RAN Development Center is planned to commence operations in 2024, marking a milestone in Saudi Arabia’s journey towards a technology-driven future.

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