Nokia teams up with Austrian telco A1 for edge cloud network slicing test

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Nokia has announced the successful completion of what is claimed to be the first 5G edge cloud network slicing trial, in conjunction with A1, Austria’s leading telecoms provider, and Microsoft.

The deployment entailed using Nokia’s 5G edge slicing solution, integrated with Microsoft Azure’s managed edge compute, on A1’s live commercial network in Vienna. The test comprised real-time HD video streaming, transmitting live camera feeds from several mobile devices with Multicasting.io, a streaming mobile platform running on Azure edge infrastructure.

The Azure managed edge compute was deployed at A1’s data centre in Vienna, with connectivity to the Azure region in Austria.

Network slicing, whereby multiple virtual networks are created by operators on top of a shared infrastructure, is best known with regard to 5G. 5G has accelerated the development of SDN (software-defined networking) and NFV (network functions virtualization) technologies, which in turn help the creation of network slices. The advantages for edge computing, with individual ‘slices’ tailored to meet particular workloads, is apparent.

Regarding the more technical aspects of the trial, the role Nokia played with its new solution was in isolating public internet and enterprise traffic while keeping critical business traffic local for enterprise edge cloud applications.

“This deployment with our partners, A1 and Microsoft, is further demonstrating Nokia’s leadership in network slicing as well as our mission to help our customers unlock further 5G monetisation opportunities,” said Tommi Uitto, Nokia president of mobile networks in a statement. “Edge cloud network slicing gives customers the best of both worlds with network slicing and edge cloud applications that enhance the enterprise customer experience.”

With MWC just around the corner, expect edge to be a key differentiator as operators and telecom network providers battle for supremacy. Nokia has already taken a step forward; the company unveiled another claimed industry first in conjunction with Middle East operator e& UAE around multi-access edge slicing.

The technology enables a 4G or 5G smartphone user to send business-sensitive information with one network slice, while participating in a video call using another slice at the same time.

(Photo by Pawel Czerwinski on Unsplash)

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