Nokia announced that it has been selected by Taiwan Star Telecom (TST) to extend its 5G network across the country.
In a release, the Nordic vendor said it will provide equipment from its latest 5G AirScale portfolio which will support TST’s 5G standalone (SA) network.
Under the terms of the deal, Nokia will supply equipment from its AirScale portfolio including the AirScale Indoor (ASiR) system for retail and office environments.
TST will also utilize the EN-DC functionality available on Nokia’s AirScale radios. EN-DC allows devices to connect simultaneously to 5G and LTE networks, transmitting and receiving data across both air-interface technologies.
TST launched 5G services last summer utilizing the 40 MHz of bandwidth in the 3.5GHz band it had previously secured. The telco aims to reach nationwide with 5G technology by 2023.
TST’s 5G subscriptions reached 5% of its total mobile users last year with a target of reaching 20% by the end of this year.
Cliff Lai, President of Taiwan Star Telecom said: “It is imperative that our customers receive the best possible 5G services in terms of performance and coverage. Our continuing partnership with Nokia will see us expand and enhance our 5G offering ensuring they receive best-in-class experiences.”
“We are delighted to continue our journey with Taiwan Star Telecom as their 5G vendor. This is an important project that will see us support their expanded delivery of 5G services to even more areas across the country,” said Tommi Uitto, Nokia’s president of mobile networks.
According to recent reports, Chunghwa Telecom (CHT) currently leads the Taiwanese 5G market, with nearly 1 million subscribers. The operator is expected to reach 2 million 5G customers by the end of the year.
The carrier currently operates a total of 8,000 5G base stations, with plans to expand this figure to 10,000 by the end of the year, according to the sources.
The operator was the first telco in Taiwan to receive a license for 5G services from the National Communications Commission (NCC). Chunghwa Telecom launched commercial 5G services in Taiwan based on the non-standalone (NSA) 5G architecture.
Meanwhile, Far EasTone Telecommunications (FET) has already secured over 800,000 5G subscribers and expects 5G service users to account for 30% of its total mobile services by the end of 2021. The company has already deployed over 7,000 5G base stations, with its coverage reaching 75% of the total population in Taiwan.
In March, FET selected Ericsson as its vendor for 5G Standalone (SA) and Non-standalone (NSA) dual-mode 5G Core and Voice over LTE (VoLTE) services. As part of the deal, Ericsson is supporting FET in the expansion of its 5G NSA capabilities and SA evolution on the low, mid- and high-band frequencies.
Taiwan Mobile, currently has 800,000 subscribers in the 5G segment and aims to increase its 5G penetration rate to 30% by the end of the year, according to the report.
Taiwan Mobile had partnered with Nokia to launch its 5G network. The telco had acquired 60 megahertz of spectrum in the 3.5 GHz band and 200 megahertz of the 28 GHz frequency.