Category Archives: vodafone

Machine Vision 5G use case demonstrated by Ericsson and Vodafone

Engine manufactoringEricsson and Vodafone have successfully demonstrated another 5G Proof of Concept, this time focusing on Machine Vision (MV) application, reports Telecoms.com.

The team created a 5G Smart Network Edge prototype including a 5G ready core and demonstrated the benefits of network slicing and distributed cloud technology for MV. Making the announcement at the Innovation Days at Ericsson’s R&D Center in Aachen, the team demonstrated how the 5G Smart Network Edge enables much greater efficiency for industry. Due to reduced network latencies the recognition rate of a cloud-based face detection application was increased. The PoC also confirmed data could be stored locally, decreasing the risk of breaches, loss or unauthorized access.

“Within only 3 months we created a 5G Smart Network Edge prototype by connecting our labs,” Sonja Graf, Head of Vodafone Innovation Park at Vodafone Germany. “The Face Recognition use case is just one example demonstrating how 5G will meet the diverse needs of a wide range of industries.”

While MV is not a new concept for the industry, it is becoming increasing commonplace for quality assurance, inspection and industrial robot guidance processes in the manufacturing industry. Examples of MV include wood quality inspection, robot guidance and checking orientation of components and reading of serial numbers. Actions of the back of the inspection can be automated, opening up the door for artificial intelligence in the manufacturing industry.

“We are delighted that the Ericsson and Vodafone labs have come together to innovate and this first use case shows an excellent example of how 5G can enable industries to become more efficient as well as more secure and cost effective,” said Valter D’Avino, Head of Ericsson Western & Central Europe.

Vodafone Italy launches NFV, cloud-based VoLTE

Vodafone Italy is working with Huawei on what the two claim to be the world's first cloud-based VoLTE deployment

Vodafone Italy is working with Huawei on what the two claim to be the world’s first cloud-based VoLTE deployment

Vodafone is the latest carrier to push ahead with rolling out a voice over LTE (VoLTE) service, with its Italian subsidiary launching the service, reports Telecoms.com.

Setting this VoLTE project apart from other operators pursuing the calling technology, however, is the contribution from Huawei to launch the service on a cloud-based IMS core network. Essentially, the service launch is a live demonstration of NFV in action, with it relying on NFV-compliant core network solutions that are interoperable with commercial off the shelf (COTS) infrastructures. In this instance, the IMS and element management system (EMS) are virtualized, managed by the snappily titled “MANO-VNFM” (management and orchestration virtualized network function management).

Huawei reckons this constitutes a world first, and builds upon work conducted during ETSI NFV ISG’s proof of concept trials. ZTE, China Unicom and HP collaborated on developing a VoLTE service based on vEPC (evolved packet core) and vIMS architecture during one such PoC, and it seems Huawei and Vodafone have steamed ahead with a real-world deployment since the project was demonstrated in January.

A statement released by Huawei referenced the NFV partnership with Vodafone in the wider context of converging the ICT and telecoms worlds. “These innovating are the fruits of partnerships with major operators and join solution optimisation as ongoing processes at Huawei,” it said. “Media plane acceleration, fully automated operation, NFV-based capability exposure, and intelligent network slicing are key areas for NFV consolidation. These future goals are the core of Huawei’s commitment to facilitating cloud transformation for operators.”

Vodafone Italy’s VoLTE rollout, while allegedly being the first to utilise NFV infrastructure, is one of a growing number of European rollouts. Vodafone Germany launched the service in March, while it’s targeting a launch in the UK market at some point this summer. EE and Three, meanwhile, are both looking at a summer 2015 launch date for VoLTE services, as Europe plays catch up with the Far East already leading the way with matured rollouts of the next generation calling technology.

EMC, Vodafone partner on Internet of Things platform

EMC and Vodafone are teaming on a €2m IoT platform

EMC and Vodafone are teaming on a €2m IoT platform

Storage giant EMC is teaming up with Vodafone to develop and offer a platform for industrial Internet of Things (IoT) service development and testing.

The IoT development platform, known as Infinite, is spread across three datacentres – one hosted by EMC, another by Vodafone, and another by datacentre and cloud provider Cork Internet eXchange (CIX).

The companies said the platform can be used to develop a range of IoT services, particularly those to support industrial automation in fields like manufacturing and fleet management, but also healthcare and higher education.

EMC and Vodafone said the companies are investing about €2m in the initiative.

“EMC Federation is leading an industrial partnership encompassing rich data and Internet of Things. The digital age’s IT transformation – cloud, big data, social, mobile and Internet of Things, is continuously and increasingly changing the way we live and work,” said Orna Berry, corporate vice president innovation, EMC Centres of Excellences (CoE). “EMC Federation and Ireland’s CoE are excited to take a dynamic and influential part in this important eventuation, with the creation of the Infinite innovative IoT platform.”

This is also the first large scale project approved for use by the Industrial Internet Consortium, a membership group of telcos, research institutes and technology manufacturers created last year and focused on developing interoperability standards and common architectures to bridge smart devices, machines, mobile devices and the data they create.

The move means the offering adheres to a range of interoperability standards being proposed or consolidated by the group.

“Infinite will prove to be a valuable Industrial Internet testbed for a countless number of industries including smart cities and healthcare. As the need for more dynamic systems continues to grow, organisations will turn to utilising mobile networks to connect to virtual systems,” said Richard Soley, executive director of the Industrial Internet Consortium. “This testbed is going to prove the viability of doing all this with systems that require the utmost security – such as those used by hospitals and emergency medical services.”

Anne O’Leary, chief executive of Vodafone Ireland, said: “We are delighted to work with EMC in this exciting development. Vodafone is at the forefront of Internet of Things technology at a global level and I am proud to see Ireland also taking a lead in pioneering the development of these new disruptive technologies. IoT has the potential to transform business in Ireland and we are excited to be in a position to provide companies with access to start developing their own IoT services.”

With IoT heating up a broad range of IT and telecoms incumbents have thrown their hats into the development platform race. Last month for instance Google unveiled Brillo, a slimmed down version of Android with a  proprietary set of APIs for IoT-specific services and communications, while SAP unveiled a thinly re-branded version of HANA in the cloud for IoT. But while telcos have long tried to get in on this segment it seems to be an interesting move for EMC, which has generally kept a low profile in IoT beyond simply tailoring the marketing around its high-IO storage arrays, and has left much of the jockeying in this segment up to others in the Federation (like Pivotal).