Tele2 is starting to shift network and IT functions to the cloud, choosing Canonical to provide a manage OpenStack-based solution.
Canonical will use its own virtual network functions manager Juju for the project, while Huawei will provide the rack mount servers and Cisco will provide its ACI solution.
Tele2 said virtual evolved packet core will be the first live application on the new network, which will go live in the third quarter of this year.
The operator said it is making the shift in order to establish "a smarter, user-friendly, future-proof and even more cost efficient internal management". It said the move would help it deliver a wider set of services to customers, spanning business, consumer, Internet of Things and big data.
Niklas Sonkin, EVP and COO, Tele2 AB, said: “This is an important step for Tele2 in further strengthening our position as a technology frontrunner. We are strong believers in 5G and are actively contributing to the evolution of 5G as a member of NGMN. The 5G standard will be ready by 2020 and in the field one or two years later. Cloud and virtualization are important building blocks in the foundation of 5G technology.”
Last month, Vimpelcom announced it was planning to virtualise network functions in five markets later this year, ahead of a similar project in its native Russia.
Earlier this month, the chairman of the i3 Forum told Mobile Europe operators are trapped in a bind between the need to transform their businesses and the obstacles stopping it from changing.