Huawei unveils CloudAIR spectrum sharing service
Wed 30 Nov 2016
Chinese multinational networking and telecommunications company Huawei has unveiled a new technology for spectrum cloud sharing across different Radio Access Technologies (RATs).
The announcement took place at the Huawei Mobile Broadband Forum event, with the Shenzhen-based company naming the new spectrum sharing technology CloudAIR. This represents the third leg of Huawei’s cloud strategy, which incorporates CloudEdge core networks, CloudRAN radio-access networks, and now, the CloudAIR interface for resource allocation.
CloudAIR uses advanced scheduling technology to allow different RATS to share the same spectrum. Rather than permanently assigning a RAT to a specific spectrum, the new technology allows idle air to be shared across different RATs. To accomplish this, CloudAIR reconfigures resource units on a slot-by-slot basis, allowing for the dynamic sharing of resources including spectrum, channel and power without interference.
President of Huawei Wireless Solutions division, Edward Deng, said of the new technology, “Like SingleRAN enabled the same hardware to support 2G, 3G and 4G simultaneously, CloudAIR enables the same spectrum to support multiple access technologies. In this way, the spectrum will be cloudified and shared efficiently.”
A notable feature of CloudAIR’s ‘spectrum cloudification’ is that older devices may benefit from a longer lifespan under the scheme. Spectrum sharing means that an older device is more flexible, as it will no longer be permanently tied to a specific spectrum. Those devices, which formerly may have been at risk of losing network connectivity as their spectrum was refarmed, may continue to share space on the new spectrum, thereby extending their usefulness.
Configuring a Radio Access Network (RAN) to manage different data requirements with low latency is a challenge for service providers, and an agile network of shared resources could help operators to solve this problem using cloud technology.
“In order to face this challenge,” said Deng, “a modern network needs efficient resource utilization, on-demand module deployment and agile service provisioning if it hopes to achieve long-term development. Building a cloud-based network is the only way to make that happen.”
CloudAIR is set to be a commercialized extension of the work already achieved in Huawei’s partnership with Vodafone. In June 2014, Huawei announced a successful spectrum-sharing trial with Vodafone Spain, in which the company was able to improve LTE capacity up to 50% by maximizing resource allocation in the wireless spectrum.
CloudAIR is currently in proof-of-concept stage, but the technology is scheduled to be demonstrated at the Mobile World Conference in Barcelona this February.