Friday, 29 May 2020

Microsoft invades the 5G space with purchase of Affirmed Networks

by Harry Baldock, Total Telecom
Tuesday 31 March 20

The acquisition will allow them to provide cloud services for 5G network operators

Microsoft is set to burst onto the 5G scene, announcing on Friday that it had purchased network specialist Affirmed Networks.   American-based Affirmed Networks is already a well established network support company, with its UnityCloud platform performing network slicing and managing 5G network capacity…

Microsoft is set to burst onto the 5G scene, announcing on Friday that it had purchased network specialist Affirmed Networks.
 
American-based Affirmed Networks is already a well established network support company, with its UnityCloud platform performing network slicing and managing 5G network capacity. The company has a number of major clients, including Orange, SoftBank and AT&T.
 
Affirmed represents an ideal partner for a cloud provider like Microsoft, who, just like rival Google, has been looking to get more integrated in the operators’ sphere. The acquisition will see Affirmed Networks' tech merged with Microsoft’s Azure platform, allowing telcos to operate their network via the cloud as opposed to using traditional hardware. 
 
At the start of the year, the US government called upon a consortium of American companies to help offer an alternative to Huawei hardware and it seems software-based, open network systems could be the answer, allowing large corporations like Microsoft and Google to find a new angle from which to approach the industry.
 
In this regard, Microsoft is not the only tech company to expand into the 5G space in recent months; indeed, Hewlett Packard Enterprises (HPE) recently revealed its own 5G Core Stack, throwing down the gauntlet to major 5G vendors like Huawei and Ericsson. Meanwhile, Google recently released Anthos for Telecom and its Global Mobile Edge Cloud, while Amazon has its AWS Wavelength. TheseTech giants are steadily invading the 5G space and it seems only a matter of time before their involvement becomes synonymous with 5G.
 
"There is a significant opportunity for both incumbents and new players across the industry to innovate, collaborate and create new markets, serving the networking and edge computing needs of our mutual customers," said Microsoft’s VP of Azure Networking, Yousef Khalidi. 
 

How are these new players changing the 5G landscape? Find out from industry-leading voices at this year's 5GLIVE
 
 
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