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.
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.