The Finnish vendor says its mobile device days are well and truly behind it, with its new rebrand emphasising enterprise technology as the key vector for company growth

Nokia has started this week with a bang, launching a rebrand that seeks to position the company as more than just a traditional telecoms vendor and instead as a broader enterprise technology provider.

Alongside unveiling a sharp new logo, the company said that it would focus on six key pillars to ensure its future success: continuing to build market share with CSPs, expanding its enterprise customer base, continuing to ‘manage its portfolio actively’ to maximise its value, continuing to invest heavily in R&D, and to turn its Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) goals into a competitive advantage.

While many of these measures seem fairly amorphous, the overall message is clear: as network technology moves increasingly towards the cloud, opportunities for innovative new technologies in the B2B sector will grow rapidly, thereby warranting increasing strategic focus. For now, enteprise technology is a relatively small slice of Nokia’s total revenue, but in future it could play a much more significant role.

“We see a future where networks go beyond connecting people and things. They’re adaptable, autonomous and consumable. They are networks that sense, think and act, and they maximise the opportunity of digitalisation,” explained Nokia’s president and CEO Pekka Lundmark.

“Today we share our updated company and technology strategy with a focus on unleashing the exponential potential of networks – pioneering a future where networks meet cloud. To signal this ambition we are refreshing our brand to reflect who we are today – a B2B technology innovation leader. This is Nokia, but not as the world has seen us before.”

In short, it appears that the company is keen to severe brand ties with its consumer-focussed phone business of the past and instead demonstrate its commitment to the enterprise segment over the coming decade.

Naturally, this announcement coincided with the launch of a wide range of new Nokia products, the most exciting of which is perhaps their new anyRAN technology – software that can run on any partner’s cloud and server infrastructure, as well as on Nokia AirScale base stations and Nokia AirFrame servers.

The operator says this new approach will help reduce complexity for operators and enable “deep multi-level disaggregation at the cloud infrastructure and data centre layers”.

“The strength of our industry partnerships and the launch of anyRAN unlocks more choice and higher performance in Cloud RAN for our mobile network operator and enterprise customers,” explained Tommi Uitto, President of Mobile Networks at Nokia.

“Server-based Cloud RAN will have to co-exist with purpose-built RAN in the short-to-medium term which calls for performance consistency and service continuity between the two. Together with our leading industry partners, we have made huge progress towards this goal by driving consistent performance across any partner’s Cloud Infrastructure or server hardware. Our collaborative approach to Cloud RAN means we can drive efficiency, innovation, openness, and scale by jointly delivering competitive advantage to organizations embracing Cloud RAN.”

The new technology is backed by Nokia’s new Cloud RAN SmartNIC, a Layer 1 (fronthaul) In-Line acceleration card.

However, it should be noted that this new focus on hybrid RAN solutions does not mean the company will be any less focussed on its own end-to-end RAN solutions, with Nokia also announcing a range of new Massive MIMO products that are set to come to market later this year.

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