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Ericsson and Mobily evolve networks in Saudi Arabia with Open RAN

Ericsson and Etihad Etisalat (Mobily) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), aimed at enhancing and evolving the network in Saudi Arabia with Open radio access network (RAN) principles with a focus on boosting the network’s flexibility.

The signing took place during LEAP 2024, the third edition of Saudi Arabia’s annual technology event in the capital Riyadh.

Exploring the potential opportunities from adopting Open RAN, the collaboration represents a major milestone in Mobily’s network evolution. The partners will explore various 5G deployment options across a flexible network architecture for purpose-built RAN and Cloud RAN.

The scope of the MoU covers network segmentation between purpose-built RAN and Cloud RAN as well as identification of potential locations where Cloud RAN deployment would be most beneficial.

Ericsson Cloud RAN is based on cloud-native principles and Open RAN architecture with standardized interfaces that are compatible with the currently deployed Ericsson Radio System products and solutions on Mobily’s network, enabling the evolution to Mobily’s architecture of choice.

Alaa Malki, Chief Technology Officer at Etihad Etisalat (Mobily), says: “Mobily is a keen supporter of Vision 2030 that aspires to establish Saudi Arabia as one of the world’s most technologically advanced economies. As a global leader in cloud and Open RAN technology, Ericsson is our trusted partner on our network evolution journey that helps accelerate the country’s digital transformation. Our new memorandum of understanding aligns with the objectives of the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology (MCIT) and the Communications, Space and Technology Commission (CST) to promote openness and virtualization in our networks.”

Ekow Nelson, Vice President at Ericsson Middle East and Africa, says: “The memorandum of understanding with Mobily marks a significant step forward in its network transformation bringing increased flexibility and greater scalability to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. By jointly exploring how Open RAN principles can be applied in the network, Mobily will unlock new opportunities for innovation, and will accelerate the digital journey in the Kingdom in line with Saudi Vision 2030.”

Ericsson has a long-standing collaboration with Mobily, aimed at leveraging the latest technologies to optimize connectivity, boost network performance, improve user experience and drive sustainability.

Image Credit: Ericsson

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