Radisys supports Reliance Jio behind the scenes

SANTA CLARA, California — Radisys is a wholly-owned subsidiary of India-based Reliance Industries. The parent company also owns Reliance Jio, the upstart mobile operator that now counts 340 million 4G LTE subscribers in India, more than any of the other, incumbent mobile operators.

Jio built its greenfield mobile network as an all-IP network from the ground up. The operator is primed and ready for 5G as soon as India holds its 5G spectrum auction in the first half of 2020.

FierceWireless caught up with Neeraj Patel, vice president of software and services for Radisys, at this week’s Open Networking Foundation (ONF) conference in Santa Clara.

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Radisys is based in Oregon, but Patel said, “We do work a lot with Jio, both directly and indirectly. A lot of our customers would be potential vendors into Jio.” Radisys provides software and services for original equipment manufacturers such as Mavenir, Parallel Wireless and Airspan. It also works with Taiwanese companies such as Foxconn and QCT.

Patel said Jio built its 4G network, rather than waiting for 5G, because it wanted to “leapfrog” the incumbents and provide a great mobile experience to millions of people in India who previously didn’t have access to the internet. He said Jio built the network “from the ground up, all IP, all flat, so when the switch happens to 5G, it would be best poised.”

Incumbent operators all over the world are struggling with switching their legacy infrastructure to 5G. Patel said Dish will have a major advantage if it, indeed, becomes the fourth largest wireless carrier in the U.S.

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“Dish doesn’t have legacy of 4G, and it has a chunk of spectrum that is kind of ‘liquid gold,’” he said. “A lot of other operators are struggling to switch over to 5G because of legacy and incumbency.”

Radisys and open source

Radisys is involved with several open source groups, including the Telecom Infra Project (TIP) and O-RAN, as well as the ONF. The company's leaders are big champions of disaggregation in networks, using white box hardware that runs open source software.

“But the boxes need to talk to each other,” said Patel. “There has to be someone to step up for interoperability testing. That’s where Radisys is positioned. We sit at a focal point looking at all these activities.”