The Indian government’s Aatmanirbhar Bharat and Make in India call is not limited to corporates, SMEs and start-ups. Interestingly, the Center for Development of Telematics (C-DOT), an independent telecom technology development center owned by the Indian government, took the task seriously. Competing with the world’s leading telecom equipment manufacturers, C-DOT designed and developed the non-standalone 5G core (NSA) locally.
The backbone of 5G networks, 5G Core establishes reliable and secure connectivity to the radio access network from which end users are connected and provides access to its services to users. Core is the heart of the global 5G network and therefore must be fully secure and robust. It handles essential mobile network functions, such as connectivity and mobility management, authentication and authorization, subscriber data management, and policy management, among others.
Dr. Rajkumar Upadhyay, Executive Director and Chairman of C-DOT, told Business Today: “The beauty here is indigenous because there are only a few major vendors in the 5G network business of certain countries – Nokia (Finland) , Ericsson (Sweden), ZTE and Huawei (China) and Samsung (South Korea) We will be among the few nations where indigenous 4G and 5G technology will be available.”
To show the power of C-DOT’s 5G NSA core, an end-to-end 5G call was demonstrated using this core, which was installed at BSNL Chandigarh. Even the 5G Radio Access Network (RAN) used for the call demonstration is locally developed in collaboration with VVDN Technologies, Radisys India Pvt Ltd. and Wisig Networks.
But unlike major telecom equipment manufacturers such as Huawei, Nokia and Ericsson, which have large teams and invest billions of dollars in research and development, C-DOT achieved this feat with an annual budget of Rs 400. crore and a small team of 200 people. exclusively in 4G/5G. Many other technologies are also developed by C-DOT with the same budget. Although the majority of work on the development of the 4G and 5G core has taken place in the past two years, the institutional knowledge and expertise of C-DOT over the past three decades has also played a key role.
Explaining the efforts that have gone into designing and developing the 5G NSA Core, Upadhyay explained, “When the Prime Minister called on AatmaNirbhar Bharat to make India self-sufficient during the first wave of COVID, we took up that challenge. seriously. With our past institutional knowledge in designing a next-generation network for BSNL, we started working on the design and development of the 4G core. But at that time, we didn’t have a radio access network. Today, we have designed and developed not only 4G and 5G. radios, but also a 4G and 5G core. However, for the deployment of BSNL 4G, it was not just C-DOT alone, but the TCS-led consortium with CDOT and Tejas as partners who successfully completed the proof of concept in BSNL network. We hope that BSNL will soon launch its commercial 4G services on this network”
This Tata-Group-backed consortium was led by Tata Consultancy Services, where technologies from C-DOT, TCS and Tejas Networks were used to perform a proof of concept (POC) in the BSNL network. C-DOT’s 4G core was deployed with Tejas Networks’ RAN, and TCS provided the other peripheral software required to create a complete end-to-end native solution.
PM Modi launched C-DOT’s 5G NSA Core:
C-DOT 5G NSA Core was launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi during the India Mobile Congress (IMC) 2022 at Pragati Maidan, Delhi. Various 5G use cases have been implemented in collaboration with national academic institutions and local start-ups. An innovative use case of extending remote medical assistance to citizens was presented to the Prime Minister by making video calls to primary health centers in Bhora Kalan village in Haryana and Matiana village in the Himachal Pradesh using fully indigenous 5G NSA system and eHealth solutions. of start-ups.
C-DOT has worked hard to evolve an indigenous technology framework driven by synergistic collaboration between R&D, academia, industry, startups, and other relevant stakeholders in the telecommunications ecosystem to accelerate the design, development and production of competitive, cost-effective and commercial solutions on a global scale. -telecommunications technology systems ready for wider reach and deployment in various scenarios.