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Nokia's ReefShark Chips to Connect 5G Base Stations

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Jan 29, 2018, 9:00 AM   by Eric M. Zeman

Nokia today announced new 5G chipsets that will triple the throughput of base stations while also drastically slashing power consumption. The ReefShark chipsets pair Nokia's antennas with artificial intelligence in order to push the performance of base stations. Nokia claims the ReefShark chips were designed for plug-and-play with its existing AirScale baseband module. The basebands will only require a software update to accommodate the ReefShark chips and can be updated to full 5G when needed. Nokia says it was able to halve the size of the massive MIMO array in the chipsets, which reduces power consumption in baseband units by 64%. ReefShark also triples base station performance from 28 Gbps to 84 Gbps per module. Chaining together six baseband modules will support throughput speeds as high as 6 terabits per second at a single base station. Nokia says 30 operators have committed to ReefShark, which it expects to deploy during the third quarter. Nokia today also announced its Future X network architecture, which will further improve speeds and cut costs for deploying 5G. Nokia says Future X combines the 5G New Radio standard with a software-defined network controller to provide a complete set of network capabilities for commercial 5G deployments. Together with Nokia's ReefShark chipsets, the Future X network architecture has the potential to deliver machine learning-based automation that will reduce the cost of deploying 5G by 30%. Nokia didn't commit to a timeframe for deploying Future X.


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