Samsung’s bid to become a major player in the telecommunications equipment market has been boosted by a major contract with US operator Dish Network to supply radio access network (RAN) hardware and software for its planned 5G network.
The Korean electronics giant will provide Open RAN-compliant virtualized RAN (vRAN) technology to Dish as it seeks to meet its goal of covering 20% of the US population with 5G coverage by June 2022, expanding to 70 % by 2023.
Open RAN is a vendor-neutral approach with standardized designs that allow hardware and software to be supplied by a variety of companies. In theory, this should increase competition, innovation, and flexibility, while lowering costs.
Samsung 5G equipment
Samsung has traditionally had a limited presence in the telecommunications equipment market, but sees 5G as a huge opportunity.
Central to its presentation is that unlike other carriers, Samsung is focusing its resources on 4G, 5G and 6G instead of legacy technologies, and can offer an end-to-end proposition that combines chipsets, spokes and cores. It has also taken a keen interest in Open RAN, working with UK carrier Virgin Media O2, while also having a deal with another US carrier, Verizon Wireless.
“Samsung is pleased to join this 5G journey with Dish, a pioneer in bringing new experiences to homes and businesses across the country, leveraging the openness and virtualization that are at the heart of network evolution,” said Mark Louison, director of Networks Business, Samsung Electronics America.
“Our advanced 5G vRAN and radio solutions combine telecom-grade quality and cloud-based agility, leveraging these benefits to enable more customers to experience the full value of commercial 5G Open RAN.”
Dish is best known for its satellite TV business, but is expanding into the mobile space after buying spectrum assets and prepaid mobile virtual network operator (MVNO) Boost Mobile from T-Mobile and Sprint as a condition of the $200 million merger. 26 billion from the two companies. in 2020.
The competition authorities wanted to ensure that the merger would not reduce the number of major operators in the US from three to four and were eager to promote another player.
As part of that deal, Dish maintains an MVNO agreement with T-Mobile so it can serve customers before its own network is ready. The agreement with Samsung and the use of Open RAN technology is essential for Dish to meet the goals imposed by regulators.
“Samsung 5G solutions will play an integral role in expanding our network, giving us the flexibility to deploy our cloud-native network with software-based solutions that support advanced services and operational scalability,” said John Swieringa, president and chief operating officer. dish operations. Wireless.
“We look forward to working with Samsung, whose industry leadership in vRAN and Open RAN innovation will help support our vision of delivering open and interoperable cloud-based 5G services to consumers and businesses across the US.”