January 26, 2022

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Nokia Deploys Spectrum Sharing to Expand AirScale Portfolio

In a concerted effort to bolster future network evolution, Nokia Corporation NOK recently augmented its AirScale solutions portfolio with the deployment of dynamic spectrum sharing (DSS) technology and Nokia AirScale All-in-Cloud base station. The latest move is likely to aid businesses and customers with superior network capacity, especially at a time when majority of communication service providers (CSPs) migrate toward experience-driven and automated 5G network operations.

The Finnish equipment vendor, which is considered to be the de-facto technology leader in 2G, 3G and 4G DSS implementations, launched an innovative 4G–5G DSS feature. Specifically designed to support Nokia AirScale base stations, this avant-garde solution synchronizes the spectrum usage between 4G and 5G, and helps network operators to reuse lower-frequency 4G radio networks. This accelerates 5G-backed deployments at minimized costs. With bulk shipments expected to commence by July 2020, Nokia’s latest software upgrade is designed to enhance the end-user experience by adding considerable capacity to its traditional technology.

The DSS strategy revolutionizes the introduction of new 5G technologies that enable the deployment of both 4G and 5G in the same band and proactively allocates spectrum resources between them, based on user demand. The combination of faster commercialization and low investment requirements has made spectrum sharing an essential part of the operator’s 5G strategies. Delivering the added benefit of a faster network rollout, DSS enables smooth and fast transfer of data within latency-resistant network. Notably, companies like Verizon Communications Inc. VZ, Qualcomm Incorporated QCOM and Ericsson ERIC, had previously demonstrated the feasibility of this next-gen networking technology.

The AirScale All-in-Cloud base station delivers business agility and operational efficiency, while retaining maximum flexibility to address unpredictable data demand requirements. Markedly, the All-in-Cloud base station provides CSPs with absolute freedom to meet various application needs, enables the monetization of ultra-low latency services and supports virtual network functions like Multi-access Edge Computing. Equipped with a highly scalable cloud-based network for a seamless user experience, the innovative platform will be supported by Nokia’s ‘Powered by ReefShark’ portfolio to further boost its 5G performance.

Notably, Nokia is focused on developing its 5G portfolio, strengthening AirScale and further advancing the capabilities of its ReefShark chipset. The company is working with multiple partners to support its ReefShark family of chipsets, which are used in many base station elements. In Mobile Access, it expects improvement to be driven by increasing shipments of its ‘5G Powered by ReefShark’ portfolio, product cost reductions, better commercial management and strong operational performance in services. Its end-to-end portfolio includes products and services for every part of a network, which are helping operators to enable key 5G capabilities such as network slicing, distributed cloud and industrial IoT.

The company is expanding its business into targeted, high-growth and high-margin vertical markets to address several opportunities beyond its primary markets. It had announced plans to accelerate strategy execution, sharpen customer focus and reduce long-term costs. This, in turn, should help the company position itself as a global leader in the delivery of end-to-end 5G solutions. However, macroeconomic dynamics and competitive pressure from arch-rivals, Ericsson and Huawei, are likely to create near-term pressure for the Finland-based vendor.

Nokia’s shares have plunged 42% compared with the industry’s decline of 5.3% in the past year. The Zacks Rank #3 (Hold) stock topped earnings estimates twice in the trailing four quarters but missed the same in the remaining quarters. It has a trailing four-quarter positive earnings surprise of 87.5%, on average.

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