The Open RAN Alliance is adopting cloud native technologies, specifically Kubernetes, to modernize the Radio Access Network and meet the demands of 5G technology.
- The modernization of networking started with software defined networking and virtualization of hardware resources.
- Cloud native technologies have created a new wave of networking virtualization that allows for scalable applications and closely coupled systems.
- The Open RAN Alliance was created in 2018 to standardize the logical architecture of the Radio Access Network and decouple software from underlying hardware platforms.
- The platform that hosts the software and hardware to implement the Open RAN architecture is called O-Cloud, which leverages Kubernetes.
- O-Cloud can host several on-premise Kubernetes clusters and public cloud-managed Kubernetes clusters as well as other types of workloads.
- The adoption of cloud native principles brings flexibility to the infrastructure and allows for a tremendous change in the way it is managed and operated.
- Challenges still exist, such as networking challenges and accessing accelerators, but the development of technology within the Open RAN Alliance has a serious impact on the rest of the cloud native community.
The rising proliferation of cloud native technologies in principles created a new wave of networking virtualization. This allowed for building scalable applications and creating closely coupled systems that are resilient, manageable, and observable. A huge game changer for the networking industry where typically a new software rollout can take months.