Huawei is attempting to reshape the air interface portion of the wireless network by using the cloud to allow different radio access technologies to share the same spectrum. Called CloudAir, Huawei’s platform is designed to dynamically allocate spectrum resources based upon fluctuations in network traffic.
The Chinese manufacturer, which debuted the CloudAir platform last Friday at the Global Mobile Broadband Forum in Tokyo, says its product will help wireless operators more efficiently use spectrum as well as give them more flexibility in deploying services.
One key feature of CloudAir is what Huawei calls “spectrum cloudification,” which the company says will help operators get their networks online faster and will give legacy handsets and other devices a longer lifespan. That’s because they will no longer be occupying spectrum bands that are being refarmed by operators for the next generation of air interface technology.
For example, AT&T is nearly finished shuttering its 2G network and replacing it with 4G LTE. This means that many of AT&T’s 2G customers, primarily in the machine-to-machine (M2M) area, must replace their 2G modules or risk losing connectivity to the network.
The company also is touting CloudAir’s channel cloudification, which it says will allow operators to use artificial intelligence-based scheduling to recognize different signals and make it easier for site selection.
In other cloud news, Huawei said that it has more than 60 contracts for the technology and has deployed it in more than 10 sites. Many of those sites have tested and verified the technology, and it will be commercially deployed in the third quarter of 2017. CloudRAN enables multiple radio access technologies to converge and also makes network slicing possible.
The Chinese manufacturer said in April at its analyst conference that it was planning to expand its offerings in the cloud. At the time, it said that building unified cloud platforms for both the enterprise and telecom operators was a priority.