Nokia enhances fibre access to hasten 5G

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Nokia is expanding its fibre access portfolio to include new solutions and innovations that will enable service providers to deliver a gigabit experience to everyone, sooner. The enhanced portfolio includes a new Lightspan MF access node designed for the 5G era, a new Beacon 6 in-home gateway that supports 5G mobile data offloading and several Nokia Bell Labs innovations that reduce latency to create a seamless 5G experience. By combining the strengths of FTTH and 5G, Nokia is helping operators accelerate 5G deployments and deploy gigabit services in the most cost-effective way.

In addition to the fibre network, the evolution towards Wi-Fi 6 in the home means that service providers can now effectively offload 5G traffic onto a home Wi-Fi network without disruptions. This will free up valuable 5G capacity for mobile devices and applications like self-driving vehicles. Nokia’s new Beacon 6 mesh WiFi solution supports Wi-Fi 6, which includes several core 5G technologies, along with two Nokia Bell Labs innovations designed to further optimise latency. Nokia Bell Labs’ PI2 active queue management algorithm reduces excessive delays in congested networks, while L4S technology provides an “express lane” for data in network equipment to further reduce latency needed in applications like gaming and virtual reality. Operators can then use Nokia’s Software Defined Access Network solution to create a high-priority slice in the fiber access network to ensure low latency is further guaranteed from the home to the core.

Julie Kunstler, Principal Analyst at Omdia, said: “We are seeing the reuse of FTTH access networks to support 5G deployments, enabling operators to quickly and cost-effectively support transport requirements. In addition, advanced in-home networking, such as WiFi 6, is enabling operators to offload 5G traffic, thereby reducing spectrum consumption. Access solutions, both to-the-home and within the home, are serving as enablers for 5G.”

Operators can also continue to combine fibre-based access technologies with 5G FWA and choose the best tool for bringing gigabit services to every city, street and building they serve. 5G FWA can deliver up to gigabit speeds in areas where the business case for FTTH is not viable or where ultra-fast time to market is needed. With Nokia’s FastMile portfolio of 5G FWA solutions operators now have more deployment options to connect more people sooner.

“Fixed networks will be the critical technology behind 5G’s success,” said Sandra Motley, President of Fixed Networks at Nokia. “By leveraging existing FTTH and in-home Wi-Fi networks, operators will be able to deploy 5G faster and ensure a seamless, powerful 5G end-user experience is achieved.”

“Low-latency innovations like PI2 and L4S demonstrate the many ways Nokia Bell Labs continues to push the boundaries of technology innovation,” added Marcus Weldon, Nokia Corporate CTO and President of Nokia Bell Labs. “These technologies will play a critical role in the network and how end users ultimately engage with low-latency applications like gaming and AR/VR experiences. We’re excited to be the first in the industry to bring these innovations into our WiFi portfolio and offer this to customers and end users alike.”

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