The UK telecommunications market continues experiencing a surge in activity. From the increase in Open RAN investment, to the UK Government’s £10 million bid to make UK ‘a world leader in telecoms R&D’, or the UK and Japanese Government’s promising further collaborations, or the UK Government launching the UK Telecoms Innovation Network (UKTIN) - organisation dedicated to expanding innovation in the UK telecoms sector and diversifying the country’s supply chain. To use a famous quote from a UK telco company ‘The Future’s Bright’.
Open RAN – the good times are coming
The UK government has committed £250 million of investment to ‘support and accelerate’ the development of ‘open and interoperable RAN technology’. This is great for the UK telco market, and we are certain to see an increase in Open RAN recruitment over the coming months. Over the last 12 months we have seen telco companies working with recruitment agencies specialising in Open RAN recruitment. Philip Jones, Regional Head based in our London office said:
“With so much activity and development happening in the UK telecoms market, especially around Open RAN and Disaggregated Networks, these are exciting times. We look forward to seeing how all this activity will affect telecommunications recruitment and the creation of jobs in telecoms. Watch this space…”
As quoted in Telecoms.com “Open RAN is becoming a hot topic of discussion within the telecom community of the United Kingdom. The government has set a goal to boost Open RAN deployments considerably, aiming to reach a target of 35% of the country’s mobile network traffic being carried over Open RAN by 2030.”
Getting ahead of the game are Vodafone and Samsung who, as reported in RCRWirelessNews, are set to expand their Open RAN sites to 2,500 and be completed by 2027, covering large parts of the South West and Wales.
UK and Japan Collaboration
In March 2022, the UK and Japanese Government’s announced their intention to work closely on telecoms supply chain issues and developing new tech e.g. 6G and OpenRAN. As reported in telecoms.com Yuji Sasaki, Japan’s Vice-Minister of Policy Coordination for International Affairs Yuji Sasaki said: “It is my great pleasure to announce the telecommunications cooperation framework between Japan and the UK which will promote vendor diversification.” How this collaboration plays out we will wait and see but it is certainly exciting for the UK telco market.
UKTIN as it sounds will be mainly focused on Open RAN, a technology that the UK government has seen as a method to boost competition within the telco sector and reduce reliance on single vendors. The creation of UKTIN was first proposed last year by the Telecoms Diversification Taskforce, a government body tasked with expanding the UK telecoms sector’s ecosystem. In December 2020, the Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport (DCMS) announced a ‘joint ambition’ alongside the UK’s mobile operators that 35% of the country’s mobile data traffic would be carried over Open RAN architecture by 2030 as reported in total telecom.