Connect with us

Cars

MWC 2019: The Cisco and Nokia tech behind Rakuten’s mobile network

Published

on


(Image: Corinne Reichert/ZDNet)

Japanese online marketplace Rakuten has made the surprise announcement that it will be launching its own mobile network in just eight months, thanks to hardware and software from tech giants Cisco and Nokia.

The Rakuten Mobile Network, which will launch in October, will be the first fully virtualised, cloud-based mobile network in the world.

Speaking with ZDNet at Mobile World Congress (MWC) 2019 in Barcelona, Cisco global director of Mobility and 5G Bob Everson said the rollout will utilise his company’s virtualisation architecture.

“They have a really nice approach,” he said.

“It’s a greenfield build, it’s brand new, so they have the benefit of being able to decide how they want to do this from scratch, and so a very innovative approach where it’s all a completely virtualised, cloud-based network.”

Cisco, which also announced its Unified Domain Center (UDC) at MWC as “the bridge between DNA and mobile”, is lending its routing and switching hardware, software, and services across its cloud, IT, and service provider portfolios to the Rakuten build-out.

The networking giant is also providing its experts from engineering, security, operations, and multi-vendor systems integration.

Once deployed, the network will include a fully virtualised network with multi-access edge computing; software-defined networking; centralised and regional datacentre capabilities; and full service and infrastructure automation.

Rakuten Mobile Network CTO Tareq Amin said his company’s network will be “software powered and automated from top to bottom”.

“With this design approach we mapped out with Cisco and a careful selected vendor ecosystem, we believe we can offer high-value services at more affordable costs, helping our customers to share the true benefits of cloud innovation,” Amin said.

According to the Amin, this virtualised, cloud-based approach is going to save his company at least 35 percent in opex compared to traditional mobile carriers.

“Normally, RAN is somewhat of a monolithic system that’s deployed out there with the software and hardware integrated, and as we move towards virtualisation, the industry is refining a path to get there,” Everson explained.

“It’s a completely virtualised network based on Cisco telco cloud, Cisco orchestration.”

Read also: MWC 2019: Google Stati/on, Cisco team up for global connectivity initiative

Everson said that when Rakuten first announced its intentions to build a mobile network, many in the industry didn’t know it would work.

“Now what we’re showing is that all they have to have out at the cell site is basically the radio and the antenna equipment,” he said.

“None of the real processing happens there, and so all they need is a construction person to go out there, not the higher-level technician, but just the construction person to hang the antenna, plug it in, and it’s literally plug and play back to the network, so they plug that cable in, it goes back to the OSS and the OSS says, ‘I know you’, kicks off our orchestration system, which pushes the RAN software out to an edge cloud node — they have 4,000 edge cloud nodes, they’re all built on Cisco virtualisation technology  — pushes the software out there, brings up all the radio software, and connects to the antenna and fires up the network, and we actually have it doing it in a couple of minutes versus days of coordination.

“Rakuten is way beyond a proof of concept, it’s a real live network that they’re aggressively moving forward with.”

The mobile network will also be 5G ready, according to Cisco, with 5G-enabled IPv6 transport and mobile backhaul.

Nokia CTO: ‘Is the future of web-scales mobile networks?’

Nokia is providing the radio hardware as well as the end-to-end system integrator for Rakuten, Nokia CTO Marcus Weldon told ZDNet in an interview.

“Because they don’t have any cell sites of their own, they decided to go straight to a cloud-native RAN instead of going with the conventional one where you put the baseband at the bottom of the tower,” Weldon said.

“They lease tower space to put radios up and then backhaul, but they didn’t want to use the cabinet, the baseband, so they’ve gone for cloud native, which is a first.”

Nokia is also working with Rakuten on 5G, but he said it will all be LTE for now.

According to the CTO, the most interesting part of the Rakuten story is the transition of a web-scale company into the mobile network space.

“They’re in the radio business to allow them to complement their web platforms. So they’re a web-scale, but no web-scale has ever built a mobile network before,” he said.

“Is the future of web-scales building mobile networks? Rakuten is the first one that is a web-scale who’s building a mobile network.”

Related Coverage

Source link

Continue Reading
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Cars

Alpha Motors Superwolf is a completely decked out electric pickup

Published

on

Alpha Motors unveiled a new version of its all-electric pickup called the Superwolf. The difference between this particular version of the truck and the ones that have been shown before is that the Superwolf is completely decked out with all sorts of accessories you might expect to find only on the aftermarket. One of the more interesting accessories seen on the truck is tube doors similar to what you commonly see on Jeeps.

Superwolf also has custom KMC wheels with large off-road tires, a custom front bumper with tow rings and skid plates, as well as a complete roof rack featuring an LED light bar and large locking case. In the bed of the truck is a rack that adds more style to the truck and supports the roof basket.

Under the doors are also compact step rails that look like they are intended to protect the vehicle’s body while off-roading. The truck also features wide fender flares and looks fantastic in general. Other interesting features of the truck include a bed cover that appears to be made out of aluminum and a rack that spans the bed allowing for items to be attached on top of the bed itself.

Several other accessories are available for the truck, including a bed extension and more. Other than the accessories, Superwolf features a driving range of up to 300 miles per charge. It has two motors for four-wheel drive and can reach 60 mph in 6.5 seconds. The truck has a tow rating of 6724 pounds and features a rapid charger with battery cooling and heating.

The truck’s interior can hold four passengers and has a digital display for the driver along with the wide-format center display. Bluetooth connectivity and premium sound are also featured. Superwolf can be reserved now with a starting MSRP listed at between $48,000 and $56,000.

Continue Reading

Cars

Classic 1967 Chevrolet Camaro Z/28 Trans Am racer heads to auction

Published

on

When it comes to muscle cars of the 60s, one of the most iconic is the Chevrolet Camaro. The value of a normal Chevrolet Camaro from the era is often very high. The value of this 1967 Chevrolet Camaro Z/28 Trans Am is even higher as it’s an actual successful racing car from the era. This vehicle is the first of six Sunoco Trans Am Camaros that Penske Racing built.

This particular car has an extensive racing history with drivers Mark Donohue and George Follmer behind the wheel. The car has been completely restored by Kevin McKay in its iconic Sunoco racing livery. The car is said to be one of the most significant Chevrolet-powered racing cars ever built. Because of its rarity and racing pedigree, the car is expected to bring as much as $2 million at auction in Pebble Beach.

The car features a 302 cubic inch overhead valve V-8 engine and a single four-barrel carburetor. It’s estimated to produce 450 horsepower and has a four-speed manual gearbox along with four-wheel hydraulic disc brakes. The front suspension is independent wishbone with coil springs, while the rear has a live axle with leaf springs, a setup common in the era.

The racing series the car was built for required a 302 cubic-inch engine. The Z/28 was born due to the need to produce examples for homologation. The Z/28 became the Camaro performance production model, with 602 examples being built in 1967. The first 25 of those cars off the assembly line were sent to racers. This particular car was the 14th produced and was sent to Roger Penske.

This car is the first of only six Penske Camaros built between 1967 and 1969. The auction house says that over $330,000 was spent to restore the iconic car completely. The car comes with a file documenting its extensive racing history and photos of the car as it was discovered and during its restoration.

Continue Reading

Cars

VW Atlas Cross Sport GT Concept has 300HP under the hood

Published

on

We all know the VW Atlas Cross Sport as a five-seat version of the Atlas SUV. But as the German automaker unveiled its Atlas Cross Sport GT Concept, we’re pretty much convinced it has the gravitas to trounce other sporty crossovers like the Mazda CX-5 and Infiniti QX50.

The concept starts with a range-topping Atlas Cross Sport SEL Premium R-Line version with a 3.6-liter V6 engine, race-inspired R-Line exterior styling, and standard all-wheel-drive. But instead of having a V6, the folks at Volkswagen Chattanooga gave the concept a modified EA888 motor from the VW Golf R. It also gets a new front-mounted radiator (from the Mk7 Golf R) and a new IS38 turbocharger.

Pumping out no less than 300 horsepower, the 2.0-liter mill sends the grunt to all four wheels via a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic gearbox. Mind you, the 2.0-liter four-banger produces more power and torque than the stock V6 motor while being lighter, too.

“The launch of the all-new Golf GTI and Golf R got us thinking about how to inject some of that VW magic into our SUVs,” said Scott Keogh, CEO, Volkswagen Group of America. It seems VW started it right by giving the concept a properly sporting engine. If you’re wondering, the Mk8 VW Golf R is the most powerful Golf ever made. It has 315 horsepower and 310 pound-feet of torque from its high-strung EA88 2.0-liter four-banger.

But Volkswagen didn’t do it alone. It sought the help of long-time VW collector and professional auto builder Jamie Orr in dressing up the Atlas Cross Sport GT Concept. If you remember, Orr also created the Tiguan SE R-Line Black RiNo concept, a lowered and dressed-up Tiguan with a Thule bike rack. It also came with a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine with 184 horsepower.

After lobbying for the Golf R’s 300 plus-horsepower engine, Orr gave the concept four Recaro Sportster CS sports seats in place of the usual five-seat configuration. After painting the entire thing in striking Kingfisher Blue paint, the Atlas Cross Sport GT concept received gloss black exterior trim, GT badging, and a set of magnificent 22-inch ABT Sport HR aero wheels wrapped in Yokohama Advan Sport V105 ultra-high-performance tires.

Underneath, the concept has ST XTA Plus 3 coilover suspension with GT-concept springs and TAROX eight-piston front brakes. Those wheels not only look incredible, but it enhances the crossover’s ground-hugging vibe. “This concept is proof that it’s possible to build SUVs that could appeal to our performance enthusiast base,” added Keogh.

Meanwhile, the interior has custom Eisvogelblau blue trim and non-animal-based materials. The Atlas Cross Sport GT Concept may be a one-off, but it’s one of the best-looking and most desirable production-based concepts we’ve seen in a while.

Volkswagen Atlas Cross Sport GT Concept Gallery

Continue Reading

Trending