March 2, 2015

DOCOMO Partners with Ericsson, Fujitsu and NEC for NFV Deployment

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R&D

TOKYO, JAPAN, March 2, 2015 --- NTT DOCOMO, INC., a personalized mobile solutions provider for smarter living, announced today that in collaboration with three world-leading ICT vendors—Ericsson, Fujitsu and NEC—it has started developing plans for a commercial deployment of network functions virtualisation (NFV) technology on DOCOMO's mobile network in Japan from March 2016, and ultimately for its entire virtualized network.

NFV enables communication software designed originally for dedicated hardware to run on virtualized hardware. It will offer key advantages, such as operational sustainability with improved connectivity for dense data traffic and during natural disasters, as well as in the event of hardware failure. It also will accelerate delivery of new services and enhance the efficiency of infrastructure investment.

In the developing plans, Ericsson composes the system that controls the virtualized hardware, whereas Fujitsunotice1 and NEC compose virtualized EPC software. Thereby the system is configured with combinations of different vendors' software and virtualized hardware.

DOCOMO will exhibit its envisioned NFV deployments at the GSMA Mobile World Congress 2015, which will take place in Barcelona, Spain beginning March 2.

"NFV, which has finally moved into its commercial phase, is no longer just a pie-in-the-sky idea," said Seizo Onoe, Executive Vice President and Chief Technology Officer at DOCOMO. "Through multi-vendor initiatives with Ericsson, Fujitsu and NEC and other leading vendors in the NFV domain, we look forward to putting NFV to practical use and thereby helping to accelerate the transition to a new era for mobile networks."

Anders Lindblad, Senior Vice President, Head of Business Unit Cloud and IP at Ericsson, said: "Ericsson is delighted to partner with DOCOMO to contribute to an advance effort for commercialization of NFV. By providing a platform for execution and orchestration of cloud services, we will contribute to enabling the realization of a virtualized network in a multivendor environment led by DOCOMO."

Jiro Otsuki, Corporate Executive Officer, EVP, Head of Network Business Group, Service Platform Business, Fujitsu Limited, said: "We at Fujitsu are delighted to be able to participate in the cutting-edge initiative to implement DOCOMO's network virtualization technology. We are moving forward on partnerships with DOCOMO and a range of other vendors, utilizing our technological capabilities that have a track record of support for the commercialization of mobile networks. Moreover, Fujitsu will provide the virtualization technology that paves the way for international standards so as to contribute to realizing the next generation of mobile networks."

Shunichiro Tejima, Executive Vice President of NEC, said: "NEC is delighted to be selected by DOCOMO as a partner for the development of their industry-leading network functions virtualization technology. NEC will aim towards the early realization of DOCOMO's virtualized EPC, while ensuring that telecom carriers around the world can fully reap the benefits of network virtualization by providing an open virtualization-based mobile core technology. In this way, NEC will continue helping telecom carriers to provide advanced communication services."

Going forward, DOCOMO will continue to pursue research and development regarding deployment of NFV technology, as well as services for the company's new LTE-Advanced network, and a 5G network that DOCOMO expects to launch by 2020.

  • notice1 Fujitsu composes virtualized EPC software by integrating products globally offered by Nokia Networks.

About NTT DOCOMO

NTT DOCOMO provides innovative, convenient and secure mobile services that enable smarter living for each customer. The company serves over 65 million mobile customers in Japan via advanced wireless networks, including a nationwide 3G network and one of the world's first commercial LTE networks. Leveraging its unique capabilities as a mobile operator, DOCOMO is a leading developer of cutting-edge technologies for NFC mobile payments, mobile GPS, mobile TV, intuitive mobile assistance, environmental monitoring, smart grids and much more. Overseas, the company provides technical and operational expertise to eight mobile operators and other partner companies. NTT DOCOMO is listed on the Tokyo (9437) and New York (DCM) stock exchanges. Please visit https://www.nttdocomo.co.jp/english/ for more information.

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