Nokia and Ericsson will be technology partners in US operator T-Mobile’s plans to roll out nationwide 5G coverage as early as 2020.
The operator announced this week (via a video blog with CEO John Legere, pictured above) that it would use newly acquired 600MHz spectrum to launch the coast-to-coast service.
It said that reserving a portion of 600MHz for 5G would mean it would not need to refarm spectrum and start rolling out the technology from 2019 with a nationwide target of 2020.
T-Mobile spent $8 billion to buy 45 percent of the Federal Communications Commission’s 600MHz spectrum in an auction in April.
Details were scant about the exact nature of Ericsson and Nokia’s roles but both vendors will be involved in the rollout.
Nokia said its multi-radio platforms and advanced antenna technologies strategy would allow it to bring 5G radio air interface improvements to lower bands such as 600MHz.
CEO Rajeev Suri said the project builds upon a 20 year working relationship with the operator. He added: “The 5G networks of tomorrow have the ability to usher in tremendous commercial opportunities for service providers, vertical industries and new entrants.”
Ericsson’s CEO Borje Ekholm said deployment of the technology would be aligned with the development of 5G standards by 3GPP and wider ecosystem support.
Meanwhile, Ericsson has completed a 5G trial in Abu Dhabi with local operator Etisalat.
The trial used 800MHz of spectrum in the 15GHz band, achieving an aggregate site throughput of more than 24Gbps.
The two telcos held the test as part of a wider technology summit, which also explored Internet of Things, virtualisation, and cloud and digital transformation technologies.