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M1, Nokia to carry out 5G small cell trial in Singapore


The small cell live trial will be carried out in the last quarter of this year

Singaporean telco M1 Limited (M1) and Nokia have announced plans to conduct a trial of 5G-based small cells in Southeast Asia.

The partners sad the small cell trial will take place in the last quarter of this year.

The two companies also said they will showcase 5G use cases in selected vertical industries which require dedicated small cell capacity and very low-latency internet of things (IoT) connectivity.

M1 said that the findings from this live small cell trial will provide practical lessons for the commercial deployment of 5G small cells in a dense cell grid architecture and operating at 5G frequency bands.

In 2017, M1 and Nokia deployed what was claimed to be Southeast Asia’s first nationwide commercial narrowband IoT network. M1 and its partners have available solutions such as smart energy management for buildings, environmental monitoring, asset tracking and fleet management which are supported by the NB-IoT network. M1 said many more IoT and smart solutions will be developed in the coming years, including autonomous drone control.

M1 and Nokia also said they plan to evaluate and showcase new IoT use cases that require a 5G small cell network as soon as the latest 3GPP standards are finalized over the next two years.

“With M1’s NB-IoT network and the HetNet deployment nationwide, we are well positioned to harness exciting new 5G capabilities and support extremely reliable and highly responsive advanced network infrastructure on our dense cell grid architecture. The practical learning from early 5G field trial is critical for the success of developing high performance and demand-driven 5G services for our customers in future and enables us to play a key role in Singapore’s Smart Nation initiatives,” said Mr. Denis Seek, CTO at M1.

“We are thrilled to continue to partner with M1 to conduct a 5G trial, including Nokia’s Southeast Asia’s first 5G small cell trial in the fourth quarter of 2018. This is a great opportunity for us to leverage the learnings from the trial to develop the next generation 5G small cells architecture and shape the future products and technology, which will benefit the entire industry,” said Mark Atkinson, head of the small cell division at Nokia.

M1 to showcase 5G use cases in partnership with Huawei

In related news, M1 and Huawei recently announced plans to jointly showcase 5G use cases in Singapore.

The two partners said they will starting with the live demonstration of 360-degree virtual reality (VR) content broadcast by end of June this year. The demonstration, using 5G equipment set up at M1’s MiWorld building in Jurong, claims to be Singapore’s first end-to-end 5G live trial using Huawei’s 5G equipment operating at the 28 GHz millimeter wave frequency band.

“This live demo is a small but significant step in our journey towards next generation 5G mobile networks. With the advancement in 5G and media technologies, immersive communication experience will continue to be enhanced and this will definitely have a profound impact on the way we work, learn, live and play in future smart city,” Seek said.

The two companies have planned a number of initiatives over the next 18 months to validate the latest 5G specifications as soon as the standards are finalized and commercial equipment is available for live deployment.


Juan Pedro Tomás
Juan Pedro Tomás
Juan Pedro covers Global Carriers and Global Enterprise IoT. Prior to RCR, Juan Pedro worked for Business News Americas, covering telecoms and IT news in the Latin American markets. He also worked for Telecompaper as their Regional Editor for Latin America and Asia/Pacific. Juan Pedro has also contributed to Latin Trade magazine as the publication's correspondent in Argentina and with political risk consultancy firm Exclusive Analysis, writing reports and providing political and economic information from certain Latin American markets. He has a degree in International Relations and a master in Journalism and is married with two kids.

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