BT choose Canonical to enable its 5G cloud core

Multinational telecoms company, BT, has announced its collaboration with Canonicals’ Charmed OpenStack on Ubuntu to be a central component of its next-generation 5G Core.

Canonical is the parent company of Ubuntu, who, according to their website,, is, “an open source software platform that runs everywhere from the Internet of Things to the cloud.”

As part of BT’s Network Function Virtualisation (NFV) program, Canonical will provide open source virtual infrastructure manager (VIM). It will also help with a cloud-based Core network.

Staying ahead of the game

By using the software firm’s open source ‘cloud-native’ foundation, BT hopes it will be able to stay ahead of customer demand with a more scalable and resilient network. The telecommunication company also aims to cover network technologies, including mobile, Wi-Fi and fixed, into one easier to manage customer experience.

In choosing this type of software platform, BT is also planning to increase the speed at which they can build and deploy their 5G services.

Neil McRae, BT Group Chief Architect has commented on the decision, saying that using this software enables developers to create innovative apps that benefit both customers and the company alike.  He says, “Using open source, we are building out our cloud and edge computing platforms to deliver really scalable technology at the edge of the network.”

“elastic, scalable, manageable”

McRae also spoke of the other advantages of using cloud, including its flexibility and creativity. The chief architect added: “The beauty of this platform is that it’s elastic, scalable, manageable and can add features quickly – and the Canonical team are helping us work out how to use this. The team understands that we need to move quickly, but that the platform has to be reliable. I want us to have a platform which enables developers to create apps that people never knew they needed but could never live without.”

In discussing the collaboration with BT, McRae says that they have a “shared vision” and that “With some of the largest telco deployments behind them and a strong expertise in the industry, Canonical really understood the challenges we face as a telco and what we needed to do to realise our vision.”