Ericsson intros AI-powered premium 5G intent-based operations

Leading comms technology and service provider deploys artificial intelligence and automation use case libraries to simplify network operations by managing conflicting intents to meet desired business outcomes

As premium 5G services such as network slicing roll out, scale and grow more complex, it’s almost certain a new generation of operating models will be required to monetise configurable services with detailed agreements on functional and non-functional characteristics, and to that end, tech provider Ericsson has announced a suite of artificial intelligence (AI) intent-based operations in its managed services Ericsson Operations Engine to enable differentiated premium 5G services for enterprise businesses.

The tech provider said that as consumer expectations continue to rise and networks grow ever more complex, the need for intent-based autonomous operations is becoming increasingly necessary. It adds that the next-generation network operating models must seamlessly support self-optimising networks driven by intent and hyper-automation that encompass manual network operations to oversee the machines that handle it.

At their heart, AI intent-based operations are designed to enable a wider variety of applications and use cases for consumers and businesses. They support a process of making recommendations and taking action for optimised decision-making with the speed and agility needed to enable new diverse services.

Ericsson said the Ericsson Operations Engine it’s launching will support self-optimising networks that are driven by intent and hyper-automation, and can dynamically adapt for increased service demand variability. The AI intent-based operations capabilities are attributed with being able to provide an end-to-end framework to translate business requirement intents into real-time network actions.

Using telco AI and automation use case libraries, Ericsson Operations Engine can recommend and take the necessary actions, check network intents are met and support the evaluation of service options with pre-defined strategies.

Ericsson’s AI intent-based operations have already seen use in trial customer deployments, with Malaysia’s Digital Nasional Berhad (DNB) using it to deliver customised 5G services with guaranteed performance. 

With intent-based operations, DNB has been able to manage the competing needs for radio network resources offered to users by the six mobile network operators (MNO) supported by its multi-operator core network.

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The proof of concept demonstrated that intent-based operations can be used to support each individual MNO concurrently in providing connectivity through network slicing. This automation capability allows DNB to automate the manual configuration of individual network elements, thereby reducing the maintenance period for upgrades to maintain its service level agreement obligations.

“Our strategic partnership with Ericsson has contributed greatly to us becoming a world leader in 5G performance,” said DNB chief technology officer Ken Tan. “Together, we implemented the world’s first multi-operator core network, which allows Malaysia’s six mobile operators to access 5G Radio Access Network with their own core network without compromising any end-user experience or network performance.

“Now, the continued adoption of AI intent-based operations is allowing us to scale the network without incremental cost, which is essential for making 5G affordable and available for consumers and enterprises, as Malaysia continues to adopt digitisation.

“We are enabling Ericsson Operations Engine to really understand communication services providers’ own business language and translate it into a telco service technical specification so that the network automatically delivers the requested business outcome and is able to constantly evolve to meet future demands,” said Bradley Mead, head of network managed services at Ericsson. “This is a big step in our autonomous networks journey which shows how Ericsson Operations Engine continues to be at the forefront of innovation when transforming network operations.”

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