KPN Netherlands Selects Ericsson 5G Core


y Emmanuel Oluebube, Correspondent UK

Ericsson has been selected by Dutch communications service provider KPN as its mobile core network vendor. Under the five-year agreement, Ericsson will deploy dual-mode 5G Core software with full support services, including an accompanying systems integration program with third-line support services.

Ericsson 5G Core will deliver a significant upgrade to KPN’s existing 2G/3G/4G packet core and signaling technology and enable the communications service provider to deploy its first standalone 5G network.

The secure cloud-native dual-mode Ericsson 5G Core will allow KPN to meet increasing data demands of customers in existing consumer markets, as well as pursue new 5G innovation opportunities in emerging enterprise segments supported by enhanced network slicing capabilities. This includes Internet of Things (IoT) applications with critical demands such as smart transport and emerging ultra-low-latency gaming use cases.

Chief Technology and Digital Officer and Member of the Board of Management, KPN, Babak Fouladi says: ”With our new 5G core network, we are entering the next era of mobile technology. By partnering with Ericsson on the latest technologies, gigabit data rates, real-time communication and massive IoT are becoming reality. This will enable new functionalities and capabilities for our customers and society and confirms KPN is truly delivering on its promise to be the network of the Netherlands.”

President of Europe and Latin America, Ericsson, Arun Bansal says: ”We are pleased to expand our 100-year partnership with KPN through our technology-leading 5G Core solutions. We will work closely with KPN to ensure that consumers and enterprises in the Netherlands can benefit from the emerging opportunities of 5G as it embraces digitalization. Ericsson’s cloud-native dual-mode 5G Core provides the cutting-edge, container-based, microservice architecture that will help KPN to both develop new business models as well as move onto the next level of network operational efficiency.”

Ericsson has achieved groundbreaking milestones for carrier aggregation in 5G New Radio (NR) technology together with key customers and ecosystem partners.

Ericsson has recently pushed 5G carrier aggregation (5G CA) technology to new levels after a series of successful interoperability tests with customers including T-Mobile and Optus, and ecosystem partners such as Qualcomm and MediaTek. The interoperability tests use carrier aggregation to extend the coverage of 5G, boost network capacity, and increase data speeds.

Ericsson’s collaboration with partners has so far resulted in several 5G firsts:

World’s first 5G standalone (SA) data session with 5G CA on a commercial smartphone completed with T-Mobile, LG and MediaTek. With 5G CA, T-Mobile can combine its different 5G spectrum bands – starting with 2.5 GHz mid-band and 600 MHz low-band – boosting speeds and increasing the footprint of T-Mobile’s mid-band 5G. It’s also a key step in expanding T-Mobile’s nationwide standalone architecture 5G network by increasing SA 5G capacity and speeds. (October 2020)

A 2300 + 3500MHz 5G Non-Standalone Carrier Aggregation call made by Optus using Ericsson technology and Samsung’s Galaxy S20 5G handset range. The call showed the benefit of using both spectrum frequencies simultaneously, namely, a significant increase in the average and peak 5G speeds that customers, with an eligible handset, will benefit from as the capability becomes available. (August 2020)

First to complete all three combinations of NR time division duplex (TDD) and frequency division duplex (FDD) carrier aggregation (CA) together with MediaTek. The companies carried out a 5G SA data call by aggregating 20MHz on FDD spectrum and 100MHz on TDD spectrum with MediaTek’s Dimensity 1000+ chipset at the Ericsson Lab in Kista. (September 2020)

Completed pioneering interoperability tests for 5G SA carrier aggregation across both FDD/TDD and TDD/TDD bands together with Qualcomm Technologies. 5G CA allows service providers to use multiple sub-6 GHz spectrum channels simultaneously to transfer data between base stations and a 5G mobile device. (August 2020)

Head of Product Area Networks, Ericsson Per Narvinger says: “From technology development to wider area deployments, Ericsson continues to spearhead 5G innovation with customers and industry partners. To maximize the full potential of the mid-band spectrum, we’ve developed 5G NR carrier aggregation solutions that will help our customers deploy a better 5G with greater coverage, increased capacity and higher data speeds. These solutions will extend the coverage of the high capacity mid-band spectrum. By enabling peak speeds, coverage and capacity, 5G carrier aggregation will be a real game-changer.”

Ericsson’s 5G NR carrier aggregation solution will be commercially available in the fourth quarter of 2020 with a global rollout expected during 2021.

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