AIS and ZTE will launch a 5G Innovation Center as a hub for research collaborations and joint 5G innovations
Chinese vendor ZTE announced that it has signed a comprehensive cooperation agreement with Thai carrier Advanced Info Service (AIS).
Under the terms of the agreement, ZTE will be AIS’ strategic partner to upgrade to key technologies such as 5G.
Also, AIS and ZTE will launch a 5G Innovation Center as a hub for research collaborations and joint 5G innovations, for both infrastructure and solutions. The 5G research center is due be completed by the third quarter of this year.
“We are a digital life service provider that focuses on unlocking digital tech such as 5G, a vital piece of infrastructure to enhance the country’s capabilities in the digital economy,” said Somchai Lertsutiwong, CEO of AIS. “This brings us the potential for our investments to deliver a wide variety of experiences and smart services to AIS customers, the Thai public and a range of industrial sectors.”
“We have always been confident that 5G will become a key variable in the near future to affect transformation, from consumer behavior to social contexts, and the growth of Thailand’s digital economy,” the executive added.
Xu Ziyang, CEO of ZTE, said: “We will continue to innovate in 5G technical solutions and applications, and work with AIS to jointly explore the huge potential of 5G networks in the digital economy era.”
AIS is currently focusing on expanding its 5G network to cover all 77 provinces of Thailand. The carrier’s 5G network currently reaches 78% of the population, with the aim of reaching 85% by the end of this year.
In March 2022, AIS, Qualcomm and ZTE announced what it claimed to be the world’s first 5G NR-DC (New Radio Dual Connectivity) showcase in the field with 2.6 GHz and 26 GHz, achieving 8.5 Gbps peak downlink speed and 2.17 Gbps peak uplink speed with a single mobile device. ZTE noted that this collaboration combined sub-6 and 5G mmWave frequencies.
AIS launched 5G NSA (non-standalone) service in February 2020 using the 700 MHz, 2.6 GHz and 26 GHz bandwidth that it won in the spectrum auction, followed by 5G SA in July 2020 in cooperation with Huawei.
AIS’ customer base reaches nearly 44.6 million subscribers, including 2.8 million 5G subscribers, which represents 6.3% of its total user base. AIS already deployed around 20,000 5G base stations nationwide.
In July of 2021, AIS partnered with Chinese smartphone manufacturer vivo to run 5G Standalone (SA) network tests in Thailand. The tests took place in Bangkok and utilized a vivo V21 5G smartphone, achieving, according to the companies, impressively high speeds of connectivity.