2022 Will Be a Major Year for RIC and SMO Announcements

By Taryn Engmark

Associate Editor

Embedded Computing Design

December 28, 2021


2022 Will Be a Major Year for RIC and SMO Announcements

ABI Research’s 2022 Trend Report identifies the three 5G market trends that will deliver in 2022 — and the three that won’t.

In ABI Research's whitepaper, 70 Technology Trends That Will—and Will Not—Shape 2022, analysts identify 35 trends that will shape the technology market and 35 others that, although attracting huge amounts of speculation and commentary, are less likely to move the needle over the next twelve months.

“The fallout from COVID-19 prevention measures, the process of transitioning from pandemic to endemic disease, and global political tensions weigh heavily on the coming year’s fortunes. This whitepaper is a tool for our readers to help shape their understanding of the key critical trends that look set to materialize in 2022 as the world begins to emerge from the shadow of COVID-19,” says Stuart Carlaw, Chief Research Officer at ABI Research. 

What Will Happen in 2022:

RIC and SMO Platforms Will Create a Foundation for New Applications and Innovation

Open RAN will continue to be deployed across the world, but mobile operators will start paying more attention to RAN Intelligent Controller (RIC) and Service Management and Orchestration (SMO) platforms, as these can be deployed in brownfield networks. ABI Research expects infrastructure vendors (Ericsson, Nokia) and networking platform vendors (Juniper Networks, VMWare) to launch RIC/SMO platforms and start creating developer communities around them.

This may lead to fragmentation in the market but will prove that openness can introduce agility and new types of applications in the network, predominantly for automation and optimization.

What Won’t Happen in 2022:

Enterprise 5G Will Not Gain the Desired Market Traction in 2022

Enterprises are looking at 5G for two reasons. First and foremost, Time-Sensitive Networking (TSN) will allow for millisecond latencies, and five-nines availability and reliability of network coverage. Second, deterministic networking protects the enterprise network from unauthorized access or interference. All these capabilities are standardized within The 3rd Generation Partnership Project’s (3GPP) Release 16, which enterprises have been eagerly awaiting. While the 3GPP froze Release 16 in mid-2020, Release 16-capable devices are still not entering the market, and we will likely have to wait until 2023 to see any noticeable announcements.

For more information, view 70 Technology Trends That Will—and Will Not—Shape 2022.