Millicom has selected Parallel Wireless as its partner to deliver the first O-RAN compliant 4G networks in Latin America.
The first phase of the partnership will see Parallel Wireless provide O-RAN compliant Open RAN solutions across 362 sites in Colombia utilising 700MHz spectrum, enabling broadband connectivity in previous unconnected rural areas.
Services will be offered under Millicom’s Tigo brand, with the deployment forming part of the group’s pledged COP$3 trillion ($808.2 million) investment in the 700MHz band. Parallel Wireless will serve as the main systems integrator, with the deployments using radios made by several vendors including Nokia and Ericsson.
The sites are being built on an O-RAN architecture with a Remote Radio Unit (RRU) provided by an ecosystem of partners. Parallel Wireless’ Distributed Unit (DU) and Central Unit (CU) software will run on a vBBU (virtual Baseband Unit) deployed on site.
Xavier Rocoplan, EVP Chief Technology and Information Officer at Millicom said that Open RAN technology presented “an innovative approach to reducing cost, increasing flexibility and efficiency by diversifying our supplier base.” He added that it would allow Millicom to connected more rural areas, “starting with Colombia” and noted that the group hopes “to bring this technology to more sites across our Latin American markets.”