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Cisco and Rakuten Sign Strategic Agreement to Accelerate Open RAN and Telco Cloud Market

February 28, 2022

BARCELONA, Spain, Feb. 28, 2022 /PRNewswire/ --

News Summary

  • Companies will combine their leading technology portfolios, expertise, and services to develop and deliver solutions for 4G/5G mobile networks based on Open RAN technology.
  • Cisco and Rakuten Symphony established a joint go-to-market model with a common customer offering to help global service providers transform and modernize their network architecture.
  • This endeavor expands on the partnership between Cisco and Rakuten which began four years ago – working together as early champions for Open RAN, driving open networking solutions for RAN, and building the world's first fully virtualized, cloud-native network for Rakuten Mobile.

Mobile World Congress – Cisco and Rakuten Symphony, Inc., a wholly-owned subsidiary of Rakuten Mobile, Inc., announced how they are combining strengths to help global service providers prepare the Internet for the Future.

Today in Barcelona, the companies signed a Memorandum of Understanding to accelerate the delivery for cloud-native, virtualized 4G/5G mobile networks based on Open Radio Access Network (ORAN) technology.

Building upon the success of Rakuten Mobile's industry-first innovative cloud-native network architecture, Rakuten Symphony and Cisco are combining strengths to offer solutions which will allow mobile operators to compete more effectively in the cloud era. Together, the companies are addressing the industry need for massive transformation to reduce costs, enhance agility and meet future technical, regulatory and environmental requirements for sustainability.

The companies have crossed many important milestones over the last four years, and they are now applying best practices to develop software-defined solutions that are optimized for the competitive mobile environment, based on automated, agile, high-performance infrastructure.

Notable components of the solutions include Cisco's leading mobile, routing, switching, and automation portfolios, along with Rakuten Symphony's Open RAN, orchestration and the full suite of Rakuten Symphony's Symworld applications. The two companies plan to work together to validate and certify these solutions for service providers and deliver systems that perform across the full lifecycle from design to deployment and operations.

"I am very pleased to see both organizations come together and combine strengths. We believe our collaboration with Cisco will bring something quite unique in the industry solving the industry's current challenges when it comes to deploying new generations of networks. The principles of open architecture, cloud, virtualization and automation are essential elements of the new networks that operators will be rolling out in the near future," said Tareq Amin, CEO, Rakuten Symphony. "Using open interfaces, virtualization, cloud, and automation from Rakuten Symphony along with Cisco's well established network footprint and offering will give telcos an opportunity to build and operate their networks in significantly better ways."

"We have proven what the benefits of an open, cloud-driven, 5G-powered mobile network can do to transform the way people connect to do more and get more of everything today," said Jonathan Davidson, Executive Vice President and General Manager, Mass-Scale Infrastructure Group, Cisco. "Together with Rakuten Symphony, we have the unique opportunity to offer global service providers an alternative to legacy RAN, with a turnkey option to transform their networks to be more intuitive and automated to support the ever-evolving needs for connectivity."

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SOURCE Cisco Systems, Inc.

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