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After 5G equipment, Tata Group looking to enter semiconductor manufacturing

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NEW DELHI: Tata Group is looking to make a foray into semiconductor manufacturing, Chairman N Chandrasekaran said on Monday.

Pegging the market opportunity of high-tech manufacturing of electronics at USD 1 trillion, Chandrasekaran said Tata Group has already set up a business to seize the opportunity.

His remarks come days after the USD 100-billion group announced entry into 5G equipment manufacturing and a string of acquisitions to create the Tata Digital business.

Semiconductor manufacturing, which involves building chipsets among other things, requires high investments and India does not have any such facility yet.

Chandrasekaran explained that alterations to the global supply chains, which are heavily dependent on China, in the aftermath of the pandemic and geopolitical changes, will make businesses shift their reliance on other countries and called this a huge opportunity for India, which becomes the second base.

At the Tata Group, we have already pivoted into a number of new businesses like electronics manufacturing, 5G network equipment as well as semiconductors, in all probability.

On rebalancing supply chains, India can significantly benefit from the geopolitical shifts that we are seeing. At the group, we have already set up a business to seize the promise of high-tech manufacturing of electronics, precision manufacturing, assembly and testing and semiconductors in the medium term, he said while speaking at IMC Chamber of Commerce and Industry’s AGM.

He, however, did not elaborate on the exact plans on this front for the group.

Chandrasekaran said he sees four trends emerging in the post-pandemic world — rapid digital acceleration, new approach to supply chains, a re-imagination of growth with environmental sustainability at the core and inclusion of health and wellness concerns by every business.

The four themes will play into each of our own existing businesses, and they are also leading to brand new initiatives for the Tata Group, he said.

Tata Digital is building multiple platforms including a consumer offering covering retail, travel, financial services, health and education, which will target both high-frequency buys and also discretionary spends, he said.

Chandrasekaran said when it comes to environmental sustainability, businesses need to have time-bound goals, not vague and distant targets, and it is critical to invest in research and development in future growth sectors such as renewable energy which is likely to see 20 new sources of power emerging in the next two decades.

Given where India is in our development curve, we have an opportunity to address our jobs challenge through a leapfrog to a green economy, through solar installation, microgrids, sustainable cooling, and better waste management. At the Tata Group, we are looking at all of these sectors, he said.

Chandrasekaran, who took over the group chairmanship after leading its IT arm TCS, said there is a need to adopt artificial intelligence, cloud and data more aggressively, and Tata Group considers this as a top priority.

Chairman of the group, which devotes nearly all its profits to philanthropic causes, also spoke about the inequities which are being created because of the pandemic and urged for a fast-paced rollout of services to universalize education and healthcare services.

Solving such problems using digital technologies will also create employment opportunities, especially for the low skilled people, and help create a market, Chandrasekaran said, expecting them to deliver 30 million new jobs.

He said with hybrid working possibilities, a good number of the 120 million women educated till the secondary school level can get jobs, and added that this alone can add USD 440 billion to the GDP.

Source: Press Trust of India

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Nokia launches new SaaS service, AVA Charging, to help CSPs drive 5G and IoT monetization

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NEW DELHI: Nokia today introduced its latest Software-as-a-Service (SaaS), AVA Charging, to help communication service providers (CSPs) and enterprises quickly commercialize new offerings for 5G and IoT use cases.

Using software consumed on demand through a subscription-based model, Nokia AVA* Charging incorporates business intelligence derived from hundreds of customer engagements to enable fast monetization of 5G and IoT services. AVA provides “Intelligence Everywhere” through AI, machine learning, no code configuration, open APIs, multi-cloud orchestration, and digital ecosystems.

Nokia AVA Charging speeds up time to market for new CSP services through automation and no-code charging configurability; is highly scalable, supporting environments in excess of 150 million subscribers; and can be used by CSP’s to monetize consumer services like cloud gaming, as well as enterprise services for vertical markets, including utilities, logistics and healthcare.

The new SaaS offering can be integrated with 5G Standalone core network functions in a multivendor environment to support new commercial charging models based on a variety of factors, including low latency, high throughput, device density, and location. It can be deployed quickly for CSPs and enterprises and avoids the hassle of on-site software maintenance and updates.

It can also be supplied as part of the Nokia / Qvantel Digital Monetization Solution as a Service, which combines Qvantel’s Flex BSS and Nokia AVA Charging. This provides a fast- track approach for CSPs to have a separate BSS stack to support new 5G opportunities and enjoy the faster time to market and agility enabled by no-code configurability.

Nokia AVA Charging is Nokia’s eighth SaaS service, following launches earlier this year that included Nokia AVA Network Data Analytics Function and Nokia AVA for Energy.

John Abraham, Principal Analyst at Analysys Mason, said: “Nokia’s timely offer of a SaaS based no-code charging solution will accelerate monetization for CSP’s who realize the need to transform their charging systems for 5G, but hesitate due to lengthy BSS transformation cycles and 5G network integration complexities.

Mark Bunn, Senior Vice President, Cloud and Network Services at Nokia, said: “This latest addition to our SaaS arsenal supports CSPs and enterprises in having a dynamic digital infrastructure through 5G network components delivered as SaaS; and provides them with the necessary pay-as-you-go, pay-as-you-grow commercial model to help them reach their desired business outcomes.”

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Airtel launches Edge CDN ahead of 5G Launch

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NEW DELHI: Bharti Airtel, India’s premier digital communications solutions provider, today announced multiple new products in its cloud portfolio ahead of the 5G service launch. The new cloud offerings will fall under Edge Cloud Portfolio and will include Edge CDN. Airtel will utilise Qwilt’s Open Edge Cloud solution for deployment.

Airtel Cloud’s Edge content delivery network (CDN) accelerates web and video content delivery by using its edge network to bring content as close to users as possible. This reduces latency, costs and load on servers making it easier for enterprises to focus on app performance. This service is especially useful in OTT, Ed-Tech, Gaming and Healthcare sectors.

Airtel Cloud’s Edge CDN service is network optimised as it uses 120 edge locations, network strength and share of mobility handset to bring better customer experience to customers. Airtel is working with two of the largest OTT companies in India and others on this platform.

Speaking about Airtel Cloud’s Edge Portfolio, Mr Ajay Chitkara, Director and CEO, Airtel Business Said, said, “With 5G around the corner, businesses will leverage the low latency, high bandwidth and high device density of the 5G spectrum to solve critical problems using edge computing. Airtel has three key strengths to offer a differentiated set of cloud offerings – we have 12 large data centres and 120+ edge locations. We also have a network with comprehensive coverage across the country and to most locations across the globe. Finally, our GTM strength has direct relationships to all businesses in India small, medium or large.”

Speaking about the partnership, Mr. Alon Maor, CEO, Qwilt, said “Airtel is a tremendously exciting addition to our global ecosystem of service providers, and we are delighted to power a unique content delivery service offering in India. Our edge architecture provides a new economic model for streaming delivery, in which Airtel Cloud’s Edge CDN plays a central role in the end-to-end value chain. This announcement underscores the momentum we are gathering as we realize our ambition to build the world’s highest preforming edge delivery network.”

Airtel has been spearheading 5G throughout India. It recently became the first company to test a captive private network at the Bosch facility in Bengaluru. Airtel is also rolling out its Edge compute service to customers. This will bring 5G private network and edge computing in a single box with a view to target factories, warehouse and ports, airports who will need low latency and high bandwidth network, IOT devices to collect and computing prowess to process the data.

Airtel also announced that as we move ahead, there will be many targeted cloud solutions coming in for specific industry needs like Banking, 5G Edge, Developer and hybrid cloud requirements on an immediate basis.

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Airtel to commence 5G Deployment from August 2022

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NEW DELHI: Bharti Airtel, India’s premier communications solutions provider, today announced that it has signed 5G network agreements with Ericsson, Nokia and Samsung to commence 5G deployment in August 2022.

Airtel has had a long-standing relationship for connectivity and Pan-India managed services with Ericsson and Nokia while the partnership with Samsung will begin this year onwards. The 5G partnerships follow closely on the heels of spectrum auctions conducted by the Department of Telecom in India, where Airtel bid for and acquired 19867.8 MHZ spectrum in 900 MHz, 1800 MHz, 2100 MHz, 3300 MHz, and 26 GHz frequency

Speaking about the agreements, Gopal Vittal, MD and CEO, Airtel said, “We are delighted to announce that Airtel will commence roll out of 5G services in August. Our network agreements are finalized and Airtel will work with the best technology partners from across the world to deliver the full benefits of 5G connectivity to our consumers. India’s transition into a digital economy will be led by telecom and 5G presents a game-changing opportunity to drive the digital transformation of industries, enterprises and the socio-economic development of India.”

Choice of multiple partners will enable Airtel to roll out 5G services spanning ultra-high-speeds, low latency and large data handling capabilities, which will enable a superior user experience and allow the pursuit of new, innovative use cases with enterprise and industry customers.

Speaking about the agreement, Börje Ekholm, President and CEO, Ericsson, said: “We look forward to supporting Bharti Airtel with its deployment of 5G in India. With Ericsson’s unrivalled, global 5G deployment experience, we will help Bharti Airtel deliver the full benefits of 5G to Indian consumers and enterprises, while seamlessly evolving the Bharti network from 4G to 5G. 5G will enable India to realize its Digital India vision and foster inclusive development of the country.”

The multi-year deal will see Nokia provide equipment from its market-leading AirScale portfolio along with solutions and services for network management, deployment, planning and optimization services to ensure the best end-user experiences.

Speaking about the partnership, Pekka Lundmark, President and CEO of Nokia said, “This landmark deal reinforces our long-standing partnership with Bharti Airtel. We are delighted that they have chosen Nokia’s best-in-class AirScale baseband and radio portfolio to deliver superior 5G performance in one of the world’s largest networks. I look forward to our continued successful long-term collaboration in this vital and dynamic market.”

Airtel will also bring in South Korean Major Samsung as a network partner to deploy #Airtel5G. This is the first time that both companies will work together.

Speaking about the partnership, Paul (Kyungwhoon) Cheun, President and Head of Networks Business at Samsung Electronics said, “5G will have a powerful impact on India’s consumers and businesses—taking mobile experiences to a new level, introducing a gamut of enhanced capabilities and expanding what is possible. As a global leader in 5G, Samsung is excited to embark on this 5G journey with Airtel to deliver innovative solutions that will help advance India’s entrepreneurial spirit and open up a new paradigm for the country.”

Over the past year, Airtel has led the industry and spearheaded 5G technology in India testing several use cases with multiple partners at many locations. From demonstrating India’s first 5G experience over a live 4G network in Hyderabad to India’s first rural 5G trial to the first cloud gaming experience on 5G to the successful deployment of India’s first captive private network on the trial spectrum, Airtel has created and nurtured a vibrant ecosystem of partners and start-ups to support faster adoption of next-generation technologies.

 

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