ZTE announced it has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) for the development of 5G technologies with Spain-based global telco Telefonica, which serves 322 million accesses in 21 countries worldwide, strengthening its position as a strategic technology partner for Telefonica.
The 5G MoU between ZTE and Telefonica aims to leverage multiple resources from across the industry to facilitate the 4G-to-5G evolution and support innovation. The agreement is intended to enable increased opportunities for cooperation across different industries in areas such as advanced wireless communications, Internet of things, network virtualisation architectures and the cloud.
Together with global standards bodies and industry groups, ZTE is driving the development of 5G technology via involvement in fields ranging from exploratory research and pre-standard field trials to standardisation activities. Specific examples include massive MIMO and beam forming technologies, where ZTE has been recognised for its Pre5G massive MIMO technology.
Separately, Telefonica and Huawei announced a 5G and NG-RAN Joint Innovation Agreement, marking a further cooperation step between the two companies on 5G and based on the strategic MoU signed in November 2015.
The Telefonica-Huawei cooperation under the new 5G & NG-RAN agreement specifically covers technologies including cloud RAN, 5G radio user centric no cell, 5G core re-architect and massive MIMO innovation projects, designed to improve the spectrum efficiency and enable a cloud-native architecture. 5G Core architecture evolution and research on cloud RAN will also constitute key cooperation areas between Telefonica and Huawei.
In December last year, ZTE and Telefonica announced joint testing of ZTE's vIMS and vSBC VNFs, elements of its Cloud UniCore portfolio, at Telefonica's NFV Reference Lab in Madrid. For the collaboration, OpenMANO stack, the advanced module designed to facilitate the creation and deployment of complex network scenarios at Telefonica's NFV reference lab, was used to test ZTE's solutions.