Keysight Technologies and Accedian are putting together a cloud-native service assurance collaboration, announcing this week that they are teaming up to address the issues that service providers face as they transition to next-generation networks.
CSPs, the two companies said, “require continuous, end-to-end performance testing and monitoring that is automated as part of a dynamically orchestrated, multi-vendor environment. They also need a performance architecture that joins lab testing with the real-world operational complexities experienced in networks evolving to 5G.”
The companies will be working together on a joint service assurance solution for private 5G, multi-access edge compute (MEC and 5G core services that will support that continuous assurance, as well as activation testing and diagnostics testing “correlated across RF and application performance layers” to monitor the end-user experience, for continuous operational monitoring of end user experience.” The two said that their solution will support hybrid architecture and provide cloud-native assurance for all 4G/5G/MEC infrastructure paths and providing analytics and correlation of transport performance, as well as the ability to isolate specific issues across the core, RAN and MEC.
“As the 5G market enters the full deployment phase, live network operations will assume even greater significance. Service assurance will have to transform, linking workflows to monitor, measure, and identify issues from RF, protocol, and up through the application layer,” said Scott Bryden, VP and GM of Keysight’s Communications Solution Group. He said that Keysight and Accedian’s combined expertise “eliminates the operational gap between service provider lab testing functions and live operational networks.”
“Industry-leading mobile operators will be characterized by their ability to control and monitor end user experience across all cloud, infrastructure, and radio environment stacks—true end to end,” said Richard Piasentin, chief marketing and chief strategy officer for Accedian. He added, “Maintaining customer experience through service quality demands proactive insight, rapid resolution of any issues, and efficiency like we’ve never experienced in our industry. This partnership is designed to deliver just that.”
In additional news from Keysight this week, the company said that it is expanding an 5G Open RAN and virtualized RAN-related collaboration with Synergy Design Technologies; Synergy will use Keysight’s user equipment emulation products (including EU and Open RAN remote unit emulation over O-RAN fronthaul) to validate RAN performance.
The test company also unveiled a new 400GB network cybersecurity test platform, which it said was the “first and highest density” platform of its type.
In other test news:
-The ORAN Alliance’s most recent plugfest was held across half a dozen venues in Asia, North America and Europe. ORAN Alliance said that 106 companies participated in the event, which featured tests around conformance and performance of O-RU devices, measurements ofenergy saving and efficiency, integration of AI/ML for resource pooling and slicing, testing of RAN Intelligent Controllers, xApps, the service management and orchestration (SMO) platform and end-to-end interoperability testing, among others.
“Testing and integration at O-RAN PlugFests show increasing maturity of O-RAN technology in all regions,” said Linsheng Liao, O-RAN TIFG co-chair and senior project manager of CMRI. “Comparing the PlugFest results year to year, we are pleased to see major progress made by the O-RAN ecosystem in conformance and interoperability tests, as well as more advanced end-to-end and network automation scenarios.”
Specific companies also touted their participation in the plugfest, with Mavenir saying that it accomplished radio integration during the European event at the i14yLab in Berlin, which was hosted by Deutsche Telekom, EANTC and Vodafone. Mavenir said that it validated its massive MIMO 32TRX Active Antenna Unit for open integration, using Keysight Technologies’ O-RU conformance and certification testing solution.
Viavi Solutions said that it supported testing at eight labs across each of the three regions where the plugfest was held. Dr. Ian Wong, from the CTO Office of Viavi, is co-chair of the O-RAN Alliance’s Testing and Integration Focus Group, and he said that the fall plugfest “, O-RAN ALLIANCE.“The Fall 2022 O-RAN PlugFest “followed a remarkable period in which more industry organizations aligned with the O-RAN Alliance, driving adoption even more globally. An increasing number of major vendors are advancing the RAN Intelligent Controller (RIC), with Nokia being a notable participant in the PlugFest. … Growing acceptance of O-RAN specifications was evident in the strong collaboration, robust test cases and effective completion of activities during the PlugFest.”
-The market for 6G testing is estimated to be between $250 million and $300 million in 2022, according to a recent report from Frost & Sullivan. Driving factors in play include 6G research related to semiconductor R&D, fiber-optic testing and radio frequency work. The report says that the compound annual growth rate for the 6G testing market is expected to be around 25% for the next 5 years is estimated to be around 25%.