Monday, 20 September 2021 11:07

Nokia has recommenced participation in the O-RAN Alliance Featured

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Nokia president of mobile networks division Tommi Uitto Nokia president of mobile networks division Tommi Uitto

The O-RAN Alliance has issued a statement that it remains fully committed to its mission of delivering open, intelligent, virtualised and fully interoperable RAN. 

The O-RAN Alliance said it became aware of concerns regarding some participants that may be subject to U.S. export regulations, and has been working with O-RAN participants to address these concerns. The O-RAN Board has approved changes to O-RAN participation documents and procedures. While it is up to each O-RAN participant to make their own evaluation of these changes, O-RAN is optimistic that the changes will address the concerns and facilitate O-RAN’s mission, the Alliance said.

This statement came after the much publicised withdrawal of Nokia from contributing to the O-RAN Alliance.

On the back of the O-RAN Alliance changes, Nokia president of mobile networks division Tommi Uitto, in a blog said, "We welcome the encouraging news that the O-RAN ALLIANCE has announced changes to its O-RAN participation documents and procedures, ensuring technical activities can continue in compliance with U.S. law.

"This important announcement enables us to get back to the exciting work we had to pause. Nokia’s technical contribution to the alliance restarts right now, right where it left off with energy, determination and that same unwavering commitment to O-RAN."

Uitto went on to say, "Nokia’s commitment to both O-RAN and the O-RAN ALLIANCE, of which we were the first major vendor to join, remains just as strong today as it did when we first leaned in to these initiatives. Indeed, Nokia was the first large, established supplier to endorse and help to found the O-RAN ALLIANCE when it consisted of only five operators. Today, 26 of the 29 CSPs in the alliance are Nokia customers."

The O-RAN Alliance needs major vendor participation in order to succeed. Large CSPs will use one of the larger vendors as their main supplier and as Uitto mentions, 26 out of 29 CSPs in the alliance are Nokia customers. For those 26 CSPs, Nokia's co-operation will allow more flexible RAN solutions to be deployed at lower risk and integration cost.

Uitto's blog also outlines the extent of Nokia's technical participation in the O-RAN Alliance.

This first appeared in the subscription newsletter CommsWire on 15 September 2021.


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  • Republican senators call for blacklisting former Huawei low-end unit, Honor

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  • Nokia launches first off-the-shelf, mission-critical Industrial Edge to accelerate the enterprise journey to Industry 4.0

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    "Enterprises need on-premise edge clouds, like the Nokia MX Industrial Edge, to provide secure, resilient, and high-performance execution environments for mission-critical OT applications.

    "Enterprises will be looking for an edge cloud solution partner that can tap into a broad ecosystem of cloud stack and industrial application vendors, understand their stringent operational needs, data sovereignty requirements, and which can bring a deep knowledge of the network to an increasingly complex, connected industrial landscape," Chappell concluded.  

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    Nokia MX Industrial Edge comes in a variety of configurations to support small, medium, and large-scale industrial deployments. Based on the Nokia AirFrame Open Edge server, leveraging Intel’s latest innovations and CPU for high-capacity processing, the Nokia edge solution is designed for compute-intensive tasks and advanced AI/Machine Learning (ML) workloads optionally supported through graphic processing unit (GPU) support. In addition, high-performance network interface cards (NICs) and packet processing systems scale to support very large 5G standalone (SA) private wireless traffic flows. It offers extreme resilience and reliability through an end-to-end, high availability (HA) architecture, supports geographical redundancy (GR) for business continuity, and the guaranteed performance is assured via integrated orchestration features for service performance management. 

    Intel vice president network platforms group and GM network business incubation division Caroline Chan said, “Nokia and Intel have a long-standing partnership to provide innovative solutions from the core to the edge of the intelligent network, which Nokia is expanding to accelerate Industry 4.0 adoption.

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  • HMD Global launches new $349 Nokia T20 Android tablet, and new $449 G50 5G smartphone

    The first Nokia tablet running Android is the T20, and with a 2K 10.4-inch screen and 64GB storage aims to be an affordable and long-lasting Android alternative to competitors and iPads, while the new G50 5G smartphone is the latest 5G model to enter the Australian market.

    As we are now firmly in Q4, 2021, the plethora of tech launches continues, with HMD Global the latest to launch brand new models to tempt the hearts, minds and wallets of Australians.

    As the company explains, both devices "are designed to keep up with the busy lives of Australians and are backed by Nokia’s industry-leading three year warranty promise."

    So, let's start with the Nokia T20, which is billed as "a tablet designed for work, learn and play."

    When it comes to tablets, there's the iPad, with its million-plus apps designed for the iPad, and then there's Android tablets, which haven't been quite as popular, but which are able to run the vast array of Android apps - and which can be more affordable.

    While you can find Laser-branded 8-inch Android tablets for less than $100 at Officeworks, Samsung's Android tablets are the ones most people think of first, given Samsung's long-standing efforts in this space, while Lenovo Android tablets are also well regarded.

    Now, HMD Global comes into this space with its Nokia T20 tablet, billed as marking the introduction of the brand new T Series, with T obviously standing for tablet, and with the Nokia T20 obviously having nothing to do with the cricket.

    Naturally, HMD Global says the T20 "has been designed with work-life balance in mind incorporating the versatility and reliability expected from a Nokia device, coupled with a long-lasting battery."

    As you'd expect, HMD Global offers what it says is "Nokia’s industry-leading three year warranty as well as three years of monthly security updates and two years of OS upgrade", thus making the Nokia T20 a tablet that "Australians can Love, Trust and Keep for longer."

    Here's the official video:

    So, what are some of the features?

    Well, it is a Wi-Fi only tablet in Australia, and has a 2K 10.4-inch screen with a resolution of 1200 x 2000, it has 4GB RAM with 64GB storage, and the microSD slot can take a 512GB card. It has Android 11, a Unisoc-branded T610 CPU that presumably has enough grunt to deliver upon the Google Kids Space and Google Entertainment Space promises.

    Nokia bills the device as allowing you to “participate in conference calls or binge-watch their favourite shows for up to seven hours with the Nokia T20’s long-lasting battery. Hear and be heard at home or on-the-go with the Nokia T20’s stereo speakers and OZO Playback Panorama with advanced in-built dual microphones.”

    We’re also told the Nokia T20 is “the perfect device for the family too. Google Kids Space is designed to nurture a child’s curiosity and creativity by inspiring them to explore their interests through recommended apps, books, and videos. Google Kids Spaceworks is added to your child’s Google Account and allows parents to manage using Family Link parental controls.

    “The Nokia T20 is a smart choice f”or businesses being Android Enterprise Recommended (AER) meeting Google’s strict criteria for enterprise mobility. The new tablet also works in harmony with HMD Enable Pro, the enterprise mobility management solution designed for ease of use and managing deployed devices from its one-stop-shop interface.”

    Now, it does have to be said that the AUD $499 10.2-inch, 9th-gen iPad, also with 64GB storage (but no expandable memory as is the case with all of Appke’s iDevices) has a vastly more powerful A13 Bionic processor, and if you’re already an iPhone-owning family, an iPad is obviously a great choice, not least because of the ability to share apps across the family.

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    However, all of that said, Android has always competed on price, and on delivering a more than “good enough” alternative experience for most purposes, and without having tested the T20, presumably it does everything Nokia promises it will do, with upcoming reviews from across the tech world sure to deliver a verdict in the not-too-distant future.

    At $349 it is an affordable alternative that lets Android smartphone and tablet owners share apps via the Google Play Family Library as well. It also undercuts the price of the Samsung Galaxy Tab A7 which is $429 for its 64GB Wi-Fi model, so HMD Global brings welcome competition as well.

    James Robinson, the A/NZ Country Manager at HMD Global said: “The Nokia T20 marks an incredibly important milestone for HMD Global with our very first tablet. Over the past two years in Australia, we’ve experienced an increase in working from home, online learning and the growing use of social media, video calling platforms and streaming services.

    “All of this has contributed to a significant uplift in demand for tablets, with 3.4 million sold in 2020, a 12 per cent increase on the previous year. The Nokia T20 is a tablet that has been designed specifically to reflect and address the changing needs and desire for versatile technology that Australians have become accustomed to.

    “We believe this device serves the needs of busy families, as well as providing businesses an affordable yet power business tool with Zero Touch deployment. At HMD we’re committed to Nokians keeping their devices for longer and extending our industry leading three year manufacturer’s warranty to the Nokia T20,” Robinson concluded.

    So, what about the Nokia G50, which the company is billing as its most affordable 5G smartphone?

    Well, right off the bat, the Nokia G50 retails for $449, so it costs $100 more than TCL’s 20 R 5G, which retails for $349, with that TCL 20 R 5G even available at $50 less, at $299, if purchased from Vodafone.

    However, the G50 has a larger screen at 6.82-inches, double the storage with 128GB as standard, and will launch with Android 12 out-of-the-box, with HMD Global billing it as “the most affordable 5G device in its range, allowing more Australians access to 5G at a time when major carriers are rapidly expanding the capabilities and coverage of 5G nationally.”

    “Featuring the signature Finnish design quality Nokia is known for, the 6.82” HD+ display will give Nokians an exceptional viewing experience. The Nokia G50 is built to last, launching with Android 12 welcoming Google’s latest OS advancements.

    “Additionally, the Nokia G50 will keep Aussies up-to-date with an extra two years of OS upgrades and monthly security updates for at least three years. This offers complete protection and peace of mind while a two day battery life and three year warranty allows Aussies to keep their devices longer and trust that the Nokia G50 will see them through the most demanding of days.”

    Here's the official video:

    To sweeten the deal, we’re reminded of HMD Global’s recent partnership with “two industry-leading brands, Spotify and ExpressVPN, enabling Nokia G50 owners a quicker way to access their favourite content. Spotify gives Nokia G50 owners access to 70 million tracks and 2.6 million podcasts out of the box. Offering added reassurance against malware, ExpressVPN is also available with a 30-day free trial.

    See more details of HMD Global’s deals with Spotify here and ExpressVPN here.

    HMD Global’s A/NZ Country Manager, James Robinson returns to state: “As 5G develops and becomes more accessible to more Australians, HMD Global expands choice of our trusted Nokia 5G range, making 5G more accessible to more Aussies. We at HMD believe that Aussies should be able to keep their devices for longer; as such, the Nokia G50 comes with our hallmark commitments to OS upgrades, security patching, and an Australian first – three year manufacturer’s warranty.”

    Florian Seiche, CEO at HMD Global: “At HMD Global we’re always striving to provide everyone with quality mobile technology, which is why we’re incredibly proud to launch the Nokia G50, a 5G device that it built to last at an incredibly affordable price.”

    Pricing and availability\

    The Nokia T20 in Ocean Blue (4GB/64GB variant) will be on sale for $349 RRP, and available from today, with details here

    The Nokia G50 in Ocean Blue and Midnight Sun (4GB/128GB variant) will be on sale for $449 RRP, and available from today online via: (Nokia G50 mobile) and leading retailers JB HiFi, Officeworks, Harvey Norman and Amazon, with details here. 




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