Enterprises today face a wireless network coverage and quality of service challenge that strains existing solutions, like WiFi. Whether used to add users, deploy industry-specific workloads, or support Internet of Things (IoT) and other connected devices, existing networking solutions struggle to deliver the connectivity, control, and scalability that enterprises need. Private networks based on cellular technologies, like 5G, can offer a variety of benefits over WiFi for several enterprise use cases. For example, WiFi can be noisy and deliver inconsistent performance in terms of both latency and bandwidth, which impacts its ability to deliver the Quality of Service (QoS) needed for real-time applications like video monitoring and robotic manufacturing. It can also be hard to use WiFi to provide capacity and coverage in large areas, like entertainment venues, nor is WiFi well suited for connecting large numbers of sensors and IoT devices. In places where a connected device is on the move, like in a warehouse or distribution center, WiFi doesn’t offer the seamless connectivity that workers and vehicles require.
Private cellular networks allow organizations to complement existing WiFi and public cellular connectivity. For example, manufacturers can deploy a private network across a large factory site - bridging operation, automation, and IoT devices - with robust baseline connectivity and support for next-generation functionality such as predictive maintenance and quality control through computer vision analytics. Building and venue owners can use private networks to improve occupant safety, reduce costs and lower energy consumption via smart-building applications, and deliver new occupant and visitor experiences. Cellular networks’ built-in security provides peace of mind for data privacy in a way that other approaches do not.
A Flexible, Mature Solution
Many enterprises have been experimenting with private networks, but operating and scaling them presents numerous challenges. With this new portfolio, built upon Google Distributed Cloud (GDC) Edge and key new partnerships, customers can rapidly adopt turnkey, private network solutions with the flexibility to deploy management, control, and user plane functions both in the cloud and at the edge. GDC Edge has access to Google Cloud services and is backed by Google’s security best practices. By building on a mature, cloud-native management experience, powered by Anthos, enterprises can benefit from a consistent developer and operational model across their entire IT estate. In addition, Distributed Cloud Edge offers the flexibility to scale to other use cases that need low latency and Quality of Service (QoS) for critical applications.
Every enterprise has unique topography, latency and QoS requirements for their applications. Google Distributed Cloud Edge provides a centralized control and management plane for secure networks, scaling from one to thousands of locations. With GDC Edge, customers can run private networks including virtualized RAN for connectivity and edge applications in a single solution. Our partnerships with Communications Service Providers (CSPs) further enable enterprises with roaming connectivity while retaining control of their private environments.
A Broad Partner Ecosystem
Given the variety of needs across different industries, Google is working with key ISV ecosystem partners to deliver integrated solutions built on the GDC Edge portfolio combined with their own distinct solutions. Launch partners include:
- Betacom will deploy its fully managed private wireless service, 5G as a Service (5GaaS), on GDC Edge, giving enterprises access to cost-effective, high-performance 5G networks that are designed, deployed, and managed to support new intelligent manufacturing applications.
- Boingo Wireless will deploy its fully managed, end-to-end private cellular networks for enterprise customers using GDC Edge at major airports, stadiums, hospitals, manufacturing facilities, and U.S. military bases.
- Celona’s 5G LAN solution automates rollout of private cellular networks that are tightly integrated with existing security and app QoS policies. Celona’s 5G LAN network operating system can also be deployed as a resource within GDC Edge, further accelerating private cellular adoption.
- Crown Castle owns and operates communications infrastructure, including wireless infrastructure and fiber networks, that serves the demands of telecommunications network operators, enterprises, and the public sector, and seeks to enable the next wave of deployments with partners leveraging GDC Edge for private network deployments.
- Kajeet will deploy its 5G solution on GDC Edge with a mission to connect students and communities with safe, simple, and secure high-speed wireless Internet to eliminate the digital divide once and for all.
Several countries, including the US, UK, Germany, Japan, and South Korea, allocate spectrum for private networking, and CSPs have spectrum that can be extended for private use as well. In the US, private network solution partners can also utilize Google’s Spectrum Access System (SAS) to leverage the Citizens Broadband Radio Service (CBRS).
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