Advanced Computing in the Age of AI|Thursday, December 3, 2020
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IBM Expands 5G Cloud Ecosystem 

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IBM continues to add to its roster of telecommunications industry partners readying 5G wireless rollouts extending to the network edge.

The cloud vendor (NYSE: IBM) also this week announced a hybrid cloud platform aimed at telecom carriers built on its flagship Red Hat OpenShift infrastructure and IBM Cloud Satellite. Satellite is touted as an easier way to build applications where data resides, while eliminating platform differences.

Last week, IBM kicked off its latest round of 5G collaboration by extending a partnership with AT&T (NYSE: T) combining the carrier’s 5G network with the Satellite hybrid cloud platform.

This week, IBM announced a lengthy list of telecom, infrastructure and networking partners that includes 5G access and mobile core leaders such as Nokia (NYSE: NOK) and Samsung. Other members of its 5G cloud ecosystem include Cisco Systems, Dell Technologies and Hewlett Packard Enterprise. The latter group is providing software-defined networking components.

Source: IBM

IBM emphasized the specific infrastructure upgrades and regulatory requirements that must be met in order to deploy edge computing and other applications on emerging 5G networks.

In a blog post, IBM said its 5G partners would “create a large hybrid cloud ecosystem that can help operators meet three strategic industry imperatives: attracting and retaining subscribers; increasing investment effectiveness while driving down operational costs; and creating new, monetizable digital services.”

For example, IBM and wireless infrastructure vendor Nokia will deploy a cloud-based 5G network to deliver next-generation wireless services to enterprise customers, including emerging private 5G networks.

Meanwhile IBM’s Red Hat unit will collaborate with emerging telco equipment vendor Samsung to develop secure 5G devices, cloud-native 5G networks and edge computing platforms. Among the targeted sectors are industrial Internet of Things deployments and AI-based applications, the partners said Thursday (Nov. 5).

Meanwhile, IBM’s telco partners will run their cloud-based 5G deployments on Red Hat’s OpenStack and OpenShift platforms. The latter is emerging as the centerpiece of IBM’s hybrid cloud strategy that aims to lure more mission-critical enterprise workloads to the cloud.

Intel Corp. has also joined the 5G initiative, emphasizing edge-to-cloud use cases. Earlier this week, the chip maker announced a partnership with DISH Network to deploy a virtualized 5G network based on the Open Radio Access Network framework and Intel’s hardware and software reference architecture.

The O-RAN Alliance, which is promoting a software-defined 5G radio access ecosystem, is among the IBM 5G initiative’s open source partners.

 

About the author: George Leopold

George Leopold has written about science and technology for more than 30 years, focusing on electronics and aerospace technology. He previously served as executive editor of Electronic Engineering Times. Leopold is the author of "Calculated Risk: The Supersonic Life and Times of Gus Grissom" (Purdue University Press, 2016).

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