NEC, ADI team for 5G O-RAN

October 23, 2020 //By Nick Flaherty
NEC, ADI team for 5G O-RAN
Analog Devices is working with NEC on a massive MIMO radio for an open O-RAN 5G system for Rakuten Mobile

The joint design of a 5G Network Massive MIMO Antenna Radio Unit for Rakuten Mobile uses ADI’s fourth-generation wideband RF transceiver with an Open Radio Access Network O-RAN interface

The 5G open vRAN (virtual RAN) interface corresponds to Rakuten Mobile’s end-to-end fully virtualised cloud-native mobile network. It delivers large capacity transmission with high efficiency by using 3.7GHz frequency Massive MIMO and digital beamforming technology. The cloud-native O-RAN virtual network is part of a major shift in how communications providers can offer high-speed internet access worldwide, at significantly lower costs, without the maintenance, upkeep, repair and labour costs associated with the physical infrastructure that hinders conventional networks. NEC has already started shipping the 5G Network Massive MIMO Antenna Radio Unit to Rakuten Mobile.

The wideband RF transceiver integrates quad channel transmitters, receivers and Digital Pre-Distortion (DPD) in a single chip. The radio is fully software reconfigurable and covers all sub-6GHz 5G frequency bands, simplifying radio designs.

“ADI’s RF transceiver is designed to support wireless applications such as Massive MIMO and small cell systems, simplifying system design, reducing size and weight, and minimising power consumption,” said Nozomu Watanabe, Senior Vice President at NEC. “Virtualisation is a dependable and cost-efficient approach, and the world’s leading telecom providers are pursuing it as the next evolution of communications. ADI’s RF equipment allows us to provide the connectivity required to build an architecture that supports 5G full-spectrum systems.”

“The new wave of 5G-based network connectivity is defined by flexibility,” said Greg Henderson, Senior Vice President at Analog Devices. “By working with NEC to drive the first Massive MIMO installation for Rakuten Mobile, we’re laying the groundwork to propel 5G connectivity forward. The ecosystem is incredibly intricate and complex, but the primary goal is for all parties to work seamlessly together to inspire efficiencies across the board: cost, time and capital equipment. These are the pieces that will help us move to


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