Viettel and Qualcomm deploy open and virtualised 5G RAN equipment

Viettel High Tech announced the successful deployment validation of inaugural 5G Open RAN gNodeB powered by industry-leading Qualcomm® 5G RAN Platforms. Viettel is the world’s first company to deploy 5G Open RAN network equipment with the Qualcomm® X100 5G RAN Accelerator Card and Qualcomm® QRU100 5G RAN Platform on a live network with real users and data traffic. This remarkable milestone was accomplished by Viettel and Qualcomm Technologies within a mere 8 months from the initial design showcase at the Mobile World Congress 2023 in March to this successful deployment.

The installation site of this 5G gNodeB is within a network cluster that Viettel had deployed since 2021 in Hai Ba Trung District, Hanoi, Vietnam. This area is a typical representation of the 5G deployment model in urban areas with dense populations and proximity to university campuses, boasting a high concentration of subscribers, ranging between 300-400 subscribers in a cell. Deploying within this high-traffic area facilitated the product optimisation process, enabling Viettel to quickly improve the products to meet stringent requirements for Viettel’s networks.

Leveraging its unique position as both a network operator and a leading 5G Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM), Viettel expedited the development process of 5G gNodeB by harnessing the capabilities of Qualcomm 5G RAN Platforms. Capitalising on a live network environment characterised by dense user bases and substantial data loads, Viettel and Qualcomm Technologies engineering teams have been continuously refining the product, leading to the successful end-to-end integration of the 32T32R 5G gNodeB with downlink throughput reaching 850Mbps in real-network scenarios. As measured in this deployment validation, this performance aligns closely with that of equivalent products offered by leading global vendors. Following the successful deployment validation in Vietnam, Viettel plans to introduce these products across their eleven international markets and extend to other global operators.

“This is a seminal moment for 5G Open RAN and Qualcomm 5G RAN platforms, fuelling modern networks underscored by architecture flexibility, power efficiency and uncompromised performance. We are incredibly honoured to share this industry first with Viettel, who has been an incredible collaborator in the pursuit of unlocking Open RAN’s full potential,” said Gerardo Giaretta, Vice President, Product Management, Qualcomm Technologies, Inc.

According to Nguyen Vu Ha, CEO of Viettel High Tech, he remarked, “Deploying a robust 5G infrastructure is not an easy task for network operators and equipment manufacturers. It is increasingly challenging to achieve a balance between factors such as high capacity, low latency, and reasonable costs. To enhance competitiveness and establish Viettel as a reputable global provider, we must continually improve our products and focus on key factors: high performance, Open RAN compliance, low power consumption, virtualization, and cloud-native design. The collaboration between Viettel and Qualcomm Technologies aims to address these critical factors, enabling our products to meet the requirements for mass commercialisation in Vietnam and global markets”.

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