Telecommunications

Google joins the O-RAN ALLIANCE to advance telecommunication networks

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At Google, we believe that co-innovation with customers, partners, and technology vendors as part of a broader ecosystem is critical to accelerating industry digital transformation. From our contribution to open standards, to our commitment to open source and our continued focus and expansion of Google’s vibrant partner network, we are committed to drive transformative change in telecommunications.

Since announcing our comprehensive strategy for the telecommunications industry in 2020, we’ve been working closely with customers, partners, and industry bodies globally to help transform the industry together. Today, we’re excited to take another step forward and are proud to announce that we are joining the O-RAN ALLIANCE, which is a world-wide community of mobile network operators, vendors, and research and academic institutions operating in the Radio Access Network (RAN) industry.

Accelerating cloud-native network readiness

When it comes to the evolution of mobile networks, Radio Access Network (RAN) is the most significant building block to reduce total cost of ownership, scale, and overall complexity. As a result, operators worldwide are now on the journey to apply principles of disaggregation, cloud, and software centricity to transform radio access. 

We believe that industry-wide open reference architectures and interfaces for RAN are key to driving innovation across communication service provider (CSP) mobile networks—with the O-RAN ALLIANCE driving significant advances in the RAN layer and already gaining traction with a number of large CSPs who have become early adopters of the standard. O-RAN specifications will also create conditions for enhanced network security and enable a more competitive and vibrant RAN supplier ecosystem with faster innovation to improve user experience and unlock new CSP operating models. 

Partnering with industry leaders

As its newest member, we’re excited to work alongside fellow ALLIANCE members, bringing the broad knowledge and expertise across Google to jointly drive and accelerate the realization of O-RAN initiatives:

  • History of software innovation
    From programming languages like Go, to the Android mobile operating system that provides the foundation of billions of mobile devices across the world, to Kubernetes, which has become the default choice for container orchestration across the industry, Google has a long history of software innovation, and we’re eager to further solidify O-RAN’s journey to achieving truly open cloud software centricity.

  • Hybrid and multicloud solutions to enable choice
    As 5G brings cloud, software, and network together, CSPs globally are embracing public cloud and multicloud for both IT and network transformation. Google Cloud’s solutions empower CSP developer ecosystems to seamlessly build and scale new applications across any environment, with Anthos providing a complete, open, hybrid, and modular solution that enables flexible deployment models across a wide range of RAN use cases.

  • Network leadership
    Over the past decade, we’ve seen the network evolve through the emergence of programmability, open APIs, declarative intents and data models, and early software definition of network functions. Over the coming years, we believe this journey will accelerate with the shift to cloud-native networking across the board, bringing in end-to-end multi-domain automation and rich analytics. We’re bringing Google’s experience in building our own scaled global network to drive greater innovation and accelerate O-RAN initiatives in this space.

  • Network AI 
    Over the next decade, companies will undergo massive transformation towards an autonomous and self-healing network. This digital transformation will require architecting, designing, and deploying intelligence across a distributed cloud network that is fundamentally powered by AI and closed loop automation. Our vision is to work with the O-RAN ALLIANCE to enable cloud-native intelligent networks that are secure, self-driving, and self-healing—bringing Google's wealth of software experience and global leadership in the areas of machine learning, massive data processing, and geospatial analytics to efficiently design, manage, and operate RAN intelligent controllers and network orchestrators, as well as create common data platforms for end-to-end network optimization powered by predictive machine learning solutions.  

We’re excited by the journey that lies ahead and look forward to partnering with ALLIANCE members to help drive the O-RAN ambitions from vision into reality.