The FINANCIAL — Ericsson and global operator Telefónica have signed a Memorandum of Understanding for the development of 5G technologies, products and services. The two companies will jointly support ongoing and new initiatives that will boost the development of 5G technologies and the entrepreneurial environment in which they can evolve, with specific focus on the 5G PPP and ETP Networld 2020 programs, promoted by the European Commission within the Horizon 2020 program.
This partnership has already begun, with one example in the recent creation of the first 5G laboratory of excellence by Telefónica (through its innovation unit, Telefónica I+D) and IMDEA Networks Institute in Spain. The laboratory, 5TONIC, is intended to create an open ecosystem for innovation and research. Ericsson is the first manufacturer to join the initiative as part of its 5G for Europe program, according to Ericsson.
Ulf Ewaldsson, CTO, Ericsson says: “5G is an evolution journey, and the transition will be gradual with deployment of complete, commercial 5G systems not expected until 2020. To achieve the expected capabilities of 5G, investments in joint research and trialing of 5G technologies must continue. We’re proud to partner with Telefónica to pioneer this work.”
Enrique Blanco, CTO, Telefónica Group, says: “Telefonica continues advancing its role as a key player in the development of 5G technologies, where we have been actively contributing to relevant international projects, industry associations and standardization bodies. We see the launch of 5G not as a date in the future, but as a development ecosystem that needs to start already now. Through this agreement, and initiatives like 5TONIC laboratory in Spain, we will be able to trial and prioritize network functions and services that will become part of the 5G networks in the near future.”
Among the companies’ joint initiatives will be research, debate, field-testing and demonstrations of technology and equipment to support eventual 5G network architecture, communications, services and applications. Through this work, Ericsson and Telefónica will develop a joint understanding of use cases, requirements and deployment scenarios for 5G wireless systems and 5G ready core based on a virtualized network architecture.
Ericsson is leading and driving 5G standardization work – from exploratory research and pre-standard field trials, through to standardization activities together with global standards bodies and industry groups. Through key technology advances like the Ericsson 5G Radio Prototypes that include advanced antenna design, multi-user MIMO and beamforming, Ericsson and its customers will be key players in defining the next generation of mobile network technology all the way to commercialization.