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17 May 2022

Round-up of highlights from the week’s news

By Wireless Watch Staff

Orange France picks Ericsson for 5G real time charging 

Orange France has signed a five-year agreement to make Ericsson Charging its strategic monetization platform for its 5G subscribers, setting the stage for more advanced services that exploit 5G Standalone (SA) capabilities scheduled for launch in 2023.  


The cloud-native Ericsson Charging solution will serve nearly 28m Orange France customers, as well as private mobile radio users and 20m IoT devices, through a software container-based system using Ericsson Cloud Native Infrastructure Solution (CNIS). Ericsson Charging will be integrated with legacy business-to-consumer (B2C) and business-to-business (B2B) billing platforms.  


The foundation for this move came in 2019 when Orange France selected Ericsson as its BSS provider for real time online charging system to modernize and standardize charging systems for prepaid and hybrid users. 


STMicro teams up with Microsoft to secure IoT devices 

STMicroelectronics is collaborating with Microsoft to strengthen security of emerging IoT applications, focusing on devices.  


ST is integrating its ultra-low-power STM32U5 microcontrollers with the Microsoft Azure Real Time Operating System (RTOS) and IoT middleware, incorporating a certified secure implementation of ARM’s Trusted Firmware-M (TF-M) secure services for embedded systems.  


This engineering project has produced a TF-M-based, Azure IoT cloud reference implementation that exploits hardened security features of the STM32U5, complemented by the hardened key store of an STSAFE-A110 secure element. 


Microsoft Azure RTOS includes a middleware package optimized for resource-constrained, connected applications such as IoT edge devices and endpoints. It combines the compact footprint of the ThreadX real time operating system with services for memory management and connectivity. 


Pharrowtech raises Series A round for 60 GHz 5G RF development 

Pharrowtech, which designs millimeter wave hardware and software, has closed a €15m Series A funding round, which it will use to continue to develop its 60 GHz wireless RF transceivers and antenna technology.  


Pharrowtech recently launched a 60 GHz CMOS RF integrated circuit, the PTR1060, and also unveiled a phased array antenna RF module, the PTM1060. These are targeted at emerging 5G NR-Unlicensed use cases including fixed wireless access, wireless backhaul and consumer or IoT devices. 


The company said the integration levels and performance of its RFIC “open the full potential of low cost, small form factor and low power FWA deployments, 5G and WiFi backhauling, next-generation consumer electronics products, and IoT devices requiring high speed links”. 


Both products are being designed-in by a Tier 1 US equipment vendor, said Pharrowtech. 


IBM’s Red Hat prioritizes edge and RAN deployment in latest release 

IBM’s open source software subsidiary, Red Hat, has prioritized enterprise adoption of edge compute architectures with its latest cross-portfolio developments, just unveiled.  


The latest products, announced around its Red Hat Summit, a mostly virtual event with a smaller physical manifestation in Boston, highlighted scalability, manageability and security across hybrid cloud architectures.  


Red Hat wants to make edge systems easier and faster to deploy, while improving edge security and app lifecycle management through foundational changes across its product line. Changes to the Red Hat OpenShift 4.10 make zero-touch provisioning at scale possible and support factory workflows for original equipment manufacturers (OEMs).  


On the telco side, the company stated: “Customers can use this preconfigured Red Hat OpenShift to deliver radio access networks more quickly for next generation mobile networks.” 



Is Qualcomm after SON vendor Cellwize? 

Qualcomm has reportedly made a bid to acquire Israeli network automation vendor Cellwize, which has been evolving its self-optimizing network (SON) software to support AI-enabled orchestration of virtualized 5G RAN.  


Israeli business paper Calcalist reported that the chip giant was close to agreeing a potential $300m deal for Cellwize and its CHIME platform.  


Qualcomm’s venture capital arm is an investor in Cellwize, which has raised a reported $56.5m to date. Other investors include Intel Capital, Samsung Next, Verizon Ventures and Deutsche Telekom Capital Partners and customers include Verizon, Telefónica and Bell Canada.