Vodafone UK and Swedish vendor Ericsson have successfully completed what is claimed to be the UK’s first 5G Standalone (SA) network slicing trial. In a joint lab demonstration, the companies’ technology teams worked together to create an on-demand 5G network slice that was configured, using a RAN slicing function, to provide the low latency and high bandwidth required for a virtual reality use case in a retail store. In a press release regarding the development, it was noted that the network slice guaranteed a download speed of 260Mbps and latency of 12.4 milliseconds. Making use of its Ericsson-built 5G SA containerised core architecture and end-to-end automated orchestrated solution, including 5G RAN slicing, Vodafone UK was said to have been able to create ‘a premium virtual reality network slice experience’.
Commenting, Andrea Dona, Vodafone UK’s Chief Network Officer, said: ‘Network slicing is an incredibly valuable step forward. By segmenting our network, and customising different slices for different requirements, we can bring to life new ideas that would be impossible otherwise. When we configure our network to empower new services, industries like gaming, entertainment and healthcare can enter a new era. What might seem like science fiction is one step closer thanks to network slicing.’