Dell scaling up a cloud-native telecom ecosystem for 5G

Dell Technologies Inc. (NYSE: DELL) is not often in the news when the topic is 5G connectivity products and services, but that is changing rapidly.

Texas-based Round Rock, Texas, said on June 9 that it is building an open standards-based cloud telecommunications ecosystem using new infrastructure, multiple new reference architectures, key industry partners (including Red Hat, Intel and VMware) and a dedicated 5G innovation lab. – all in order to expand Dell’s business in the telecommunications service provider (CSP) market.

Telecommunications hardware and software was not a sector that used to be a mainstay for Dell. Now the company sees this as a major new business opportunity.

“This 5G era is truly Enterprise G,” Dennis Hoffman, senior vice president and general manager of Dell’s Telecom Systems Business, told reporters. “This is the era in which the next set of these types of transformation services will take place throughout the economy.

“Three things need to happen to do this. First, they (telecommunications companies) need to be able to build and generate revenue from final calculations. Second, they need to modernize network architectures; the legacy network is not as agile as it is. It is not software-defined, it is not essentially native to the cloud, it really comes down to the last piece, which is that operations that are native to the cloud should become the main mechanism by which the communication service provider works. “

The main conclusion here is Project Metalweaver, software that telecommunications companies can use to design highly scalable cloud infrastructure in large areas. Hoffman described it as a configurable platform that CSPs can use to autonomously deploy and manage hardware computing, networking, and storage across multiple vendors across multiple regions of the world, supported by Dell’s global support and services.

The 5G reference architectures Dell has made environments available with a cover, core, and Open RAN, Hoffman said. (Open Radio Access Network is a term for industry-wide standards for RAN interfaces that maintain interoperability between vendor equipment.) These reference architectures will be provided this summer to provide CSP with guidelines for full stack development, deployment capabilities, and operational capabilities. recommendations for different uses, Dell said.

In addition to working with VMware, Intel and Red Hat on the ecosystem, Dell said it will build major 5G software packages with Nokia Corp. and Affirmed Networks Inc., multi-access computing platforms with Intel Smart Edge and private networking solutions with CommScope Inc. The company will also develop 5G Open RAN software with Mavenir Systems Inc., which will optimize it for Dell EMC PowerEdge XR11 servers.

Dell’s new Open Telecom Ecosystem Lab is designed to serve as a place where its customers and partners can explore ways to collaborate on future telecommunications infrastructure and applications, Hoffman said. It will host Dell Round Rock headquarters.

“Communication networks are disaggregating, creating an open ecosystem of hardware and software vendors to support this transformation,” said Daryl Scholar, a leading analyst at Omdia. “Communication service providers need strategic partners to help organize the ecosystem, provide validated solutions and take responsibility for implementation and performance.”