STL, Facebook to collaborate for 5G network development

Ayushi Kar Mumbai | Updated on August 03, 2021

STL to be the first Indian firm to collaborate with Evenstar Programme to provide Open-RAN radio solutions.

In an effort to further boost presence into the global 5G open-source network market, STL announced their collaboration with Facebook to build radio units. STL is the first Indian company to be collaborating with Facebook's Evenstar Program to provide Open-RAN radio solutions.

Facebook Connectivity aims to improve infrastructure for global networks for operators globally, such as Vodafone, Deutsche TeleKom, Mavenir etc. The Evenstar program mainly focuses on building general-purpose RAN reference designs for 4G/5G networks aligned with 3GPP (global standardisation body) and Open-RAN specifications. In the ongoing 5G network rollout, Open-RAN solutions have gained prominence, in a bid to create vendor-neutral disaggregated network solutions based upon a universal network standard Open-RAN. STL's role in this collaboration is to build an Open-RAN compliant radio providing higher capacity for dense deployments. As part of this engagement, STL will also develop an Open-RAN compliant 4G+5G Dual Technology Radio that supports both technologies individually or/and concurrently.

These 3GPP and Open-RAN compliant radio products will be developed over the next year. They will enable telecom operators worldwide to scale up commercial deployments of open networking infrastructure and prepare their networks for Open RAN 5G.

Speaking on the nature of the collaboration Dr Badri Gomatam, Group CTO, STL told Business Line, "Investments are being made from both Facebook and STL in this regard. This is a clear collaboration of both our technology and R&D capabilities to design and build these radios." Gomatam also contends that with this collaboration STL will be one of the first movers to develop and deploy these O-RAN compliant radios.

Jaydeep Ranade, Director of Wireless Engineering for Facebook Connectivity said, “The Evenstar program is a part of our efforts to accelerate the availability and commercial readiness of Open RAN solutions, and we are excited to have STL on board. We look forward to working with STL to continue shifting the industry towards open, disaggregated and more vendor agnostic 5G networks.”

Chris Rice, CEO of Access Solutions Business, STL, further added, " By enabling an open networking infrastructure through efforts like this one, we are enabling global telecom service providers to take the power of 5G technology to billions of people worldwide at lower cost points.”

Published on August 03, 2021

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