Japanese telecommunications giant NTT Docomo is set to revolutionize its commercial network with the adoption of Nokia’s Open RAN compliant 5G AirScale baseband kit. The comprehensive deployment includes both Centralized Unit (CU) and Distributed Unit (DU) software, emphasizing Nokia’s industry leadership in the mobile communication sector.

This strategic move allows NTT Docomo to pursue a multi-supplier strategy, offering the flexibility to integrate Open Radio Units from various suppliers. The partnership underscores the companies’ commitment to Open RAN, with NTT Docomo expressing its dedication to supporting global telecom operators in embracing this transformative technology.

The deployment leverages Nokia’s AirScale portfolio, renowned for its low-power, energy-efficient design based on ReefShark System-on-Chip technology. This aligns with NTT Docomo’s sustainability goals, as the solution promises reduced operational costs and a smaller environmental footprint.

Masafumi Masuda, General Manager of Radio Access Network Technology Promotion Office at NTT Docomo, lauded Nokia’s O-RAN compatible AirScale 5G Baseband solution, highlighting its competitiveness and compatibility with any O-RUs on the 5G commercial network. He expressed enthusiasm about the partnership, emphasizing Nokia’s continuous support as NTT Docomo progresses towards more open networks.

Mark Atkinson, Head of RAN at Nokia, reiterated the company’s dedication to Open RAN, emphasizing seamless integration and interoperability with products from other suppliers. Atkinson highlighted Nokia’s commitment to providing customers with a wide array of choices and higher performance in Open RAN solutions compared to other RAN suppliers.

In a recent milestone, Nokia and Mavenir successfully conducted interoperability testing of Mavenir’s CBRS Radio Unit and Nokia’s AirScale Baseband, showcasing 5G peak performance. The collaboration activated 4 component carrier (4CC) carrier aggregation using both TDD and FDD spectrum in a 5G standalone (SA) test network. This achievement further solidifies Nokia and NTT Docomo’s position as pioneers in driving Open RAN adoption globally.