The operator plans a trial during the 2018 Olympic Games in PyeongChang
HONG KONG–South Korean mobile carrier KT confirmed plans to launch commercial 5G services in 2019, the company’s SVP of network strategy, YongGyoo Lee, said during a keynote presentation at Qualcomm’s 4G/5G Summit.
The executive said that KT’s 5G deployment plans initially stipulates the use of 28 GHz for hotspot-urban and 3.5 GHz for urban and rural areas. Through the utilization of these spectrum, KT will be in a position to cover a wide range of use cases such as smart cities, 4K/8K cameras, remote medical services, drones, smart factories and public safety, Lee said.
The executive said that the telco will provide 5G services through a service trial in the city of PyeongChang, which will host the 2018 Winter Olympic Games.
KT previously confirmed it has recently started the deployment of its 5G network in major parts of PyeongChang to accelerate its preparations for this initiative. KT signed an agreement with Korea Expressway Corp (KEC) for the deployment of 5G infrastructure on major roads and facilities in PyeongChang.
KT previously announced plans to test a 5G network during a five-month period before it launches a trial service in February 2018.
In October 2016, the telco had set up the network for a test run in the Gwanghwamun area in downtown Seoul, and claims to have seen data transmission speeds of up to 2.3 Gbps. KT is collaborating with vendors including ZTE and Ericsson.
In July, KT Corp and LG Uplus had jointly deployed a commercial NB-IoT network across South Korea. The NB-IoT network currently covers capital Seoul and all metropolitan areas, plus small towns, ports and roads.
The two telcos said that they expect to expand the commercial NB-IoT services later this year to include remote gas meter reading, vehicle management/tracking and other utility meter management applications.
In June this year, KT Corp had carried out a NB-IoT Lab PoC trial and in September, the telco had completed a NB-IoT service trial.