Telenor and Ericsson join forces to pioneer the usage of AI and Machine Learning Research for a Sustainable and Smarter Future


In a step towards advancing the realm of artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) technologies within the telecommunications industry, Telenor and Ericsson (NASDAQ: ERIC) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for a three-year partnership that aims to explore, develop, and test cutting-edge AI/ML solutions towards enhancing energy efficiency without compromising on the quality of connectivity in mobile networks.

Mobile networks are increasingly becoming programmable. AI and ML are advanced forms of software that will enable more powerful decision-support and touch-free operations in customer-facing network domains. At the same time, energy efficiency is and will be a fundamental expectation for communication service providers, as will be the development and deployment of secure and robust AI systems.

Ieva Martinkenaite, Senior Vice President & Head of Telenor Research & Innovation, said, “AI adoption is essential for Telenor to unlock our customers’ potential. We expect this collaboration to break new ground when it comes to leveraging AI and automation to help address the complexity of 5G networks, drive energy efficiencies, improve customer experience – and make Telenor an AI-first company.”

The collaboration between Telenor and Ericsson under this MoU underscores the shared commitment of both companies to harnessing the potential of AI and ML in a responsible manner to unlock the potential for the customer. By doing so, they aim to not only realize substantial business benefits but also to establish themselves as leading tech companies and trusted advisors in the deployment of digital technologies across their respective markets.

Rita Mokbel, Head of Global Customer Unit Telenor at Ericsson states, “Together with Telenor, we want to build new knowledge in the area of AI/ML to improve network operations and energy efficiency management for both parties. We also expect to benefit from the real time collaboration as we will act on workable innovations as soon as possible to the benefit of our customers.”

The MoU focuses on two key areas of engagement:

Energy Management and Network Optimization: Telenor and Ericsson will work together to develop and implement AI-driven solutions to optimize energy consumption and enhance network performance, particularly in radio access networks (RAN).

Implementation of Safe and Trustworthy AI: The partnership will also emphasize the development of explainable AI systems to ensure transparency and reliability in network operations.

The collaboration is expected to yield a range of significant outcomes, including:

  • Research Insights: Joint publications on advanced ML methods in mobile networks, covering topics such as energy optimization in RAN and secure, explainable AI.
  • Live Test Network Deployment: Testing and deployment of AI/ML systems in a live test network, including energy efficiency, anomaly detection, and spectrum sharing, in cooperation with early adopters and Telenor customers.
  • Validation of Business Models: The validation of AI-driven 5G use cases and business models.
  • Knowledge Building: Creation of teaching modules and similar resources to accelerate growth potential in AI-native telecommunications.

This research and development collaboration will also contribute positively to the Norwegian and Nordic research communities in the fields of AI and Data Science. It is anticipated to attract top talents and advance AI research in telecom-relevant domains as each party will commit Research and Innovation (R&I) personnel resources.