F5 Partners with Rakuten Mobile to support new cloud-native mobile network, 5G-ready service rollout

F5 telecom solution delivers a faster, more secure experience for Rakuten customers
James Feger, F5 Networks
James Feger, F5 Networks


F5 Networks has announced that it has partnered with Rakuten Mobile, Inc., the mobile network subsidiary of Japan’s Rakuten Group, to support the company’s launch of the world’s first fully virtualised, cloud-native mobile network and its future deployment of 5G. The carrier will leverage F5’s network functions virtualisation (NFV) capabilities to optimise its new mobile network and accelerate its path to 5G services in 2020.

Through this partnership, Rakuten Mobile, Inc. is collaborating with F5 to scale and evolve their cloud-native network design architecture to increase scalability and flexibility without sacrificing control. F5 has provided a full-suite N6/SGi-LAN solution consisting of virtualized CGNAT, SGi Firewall, DNS Transparent Cache, and IP Traffic Optimisation

Functions to deliver enhanced Mobile Broadband (eMBB) services. F5’s NFV capabilities and offerings enabled Rakuten Mobile, Inc. to:

  • Simplify and optimize service orchestration
  • Ensure application availability, performance, and security
  • Have unmatched freedom and agility in deployment of services
  • Enable a higher throughput, low-latency network and allow predictable scaling for services

Rakuten Mobile, Inc.’s 5G-ready network leverages an innovative, software-driven architecture entirely on the cloud, which ensures stability, scalability, and agility, as well as effectively manages costs, and brings secure and high-performance connectivity to consumers. This virtualised architecture is set to disrupt the telecom industry landscape not only in Japan but also the rest of the world.

Earlier this year, F5 announced several new solutions and enhancements designed to allow service providers to launch 5G services. These offerings enable service providers to maximize the investments in their current 4G networks, while optimising their infrastructures with the scale to securely deploy emerging 5G.

“Rakuten, one of Japan’s most innovative and well-known brands, is an ideal company to partner with on strategic projects like this,” said James Feger, VP and general manager of Service Provider business at F5.

“After years of preparing for 5G, we’re seeing progress as service providers like Rakuten begin to implement the infrastructure to make its promise a reality,” Yuichi Gonda, regional VP at F5 Networks Japan, added. “With F5’s proven carrier-grade solutions, service providers like Rakuten Mobile can optimise their networks, monetize new 5G solutions and applications, and ensure world-class security of their network and subscribers.”

“Our vision is to build a network that innovates at the speed of software and scales at the speed of cloud, and—with a culture founded in technical and operational innovation—we are uniquely positioned to achieve that,” said Tareq Amin, Rakuten Mobile’s chief technology officer. “By leveraging best-in-class technology from partners such as F5, we aim to provide a high quality, cost-effective mobile service to our customers.”

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