Samsung and Nokia work together on 5G testing


Key goal for both companies is to ensure cross-vendor compatibility of 5G implementations

Mobile World Congress, Barcelona: Continuing its efforts to help foster a strong 5G ecosystem, Samsung Electronics has announced a collaboration with Nokia to ensure the vendors’ respective product portfolios are aligned with 5G specifications.

This cooperation is part of an ongoing commitment made by Samsung at the company’s Silicon Valley 5G Summit held last October. Both companies agree that the transition to 5G, as well as its early commercial success, will be largely dependent on the mobile industry’s ability to establish strong multi-vendor-compatible solutions that address a rapidly growing number of new use cases.

Frank Weyerich, executive VP of mobile networks products at Nokia, said: “Collaboration between vendors is crucial for 5G to enable new business in the mobile market and other industry sectors. The joint interoperability testing between Nokia and Samsung is an important step for making 5G work across networks and devices, fostering early 5G availability and success in the market.”

The two companies have been in collaboration talks since early last year and have since completed initial phases of interoperability testing. The compliance with Verizon 5GTF and Korean Telecom SIG specifications are a primary focus, and Samsung and Nokia will continue with lab testing throughout 2017.

Engineers from each company will work to ensure compatibility and performance between Samsung’s 5G Customer Premise Equipment (CPE) devices, which provide home 5G connectivity, and Nokia’s AirScale radio access. These same devices are expected to see critical deployments in markets such as the U.S. and Korea throughout 2017 and 2018, to ensure wide scale commercial 5G deployments by 2020.

“With 5G, network architecture is becoming increasingly flexible in order to accommodate completely new use cases, such as fixed wireless access,” said Paul Kyungwhoon Cheun, executive VP of next generation communications, Samsung Electronics. “Ensuring that everyone is on the same page and working towards the same goals is a huge part of building a healthy 5G ecosystem. Samsung is building the infrastructure and devices to ensure an end-to-end 5G solution. While we are working with device chipset vendors to ensure the widest selection of devices for operators, we are also happy to work with Nokia networks to ensure operators can use our 5G devices freely.”

As 5G is expected to enable an unprecedented number of new use cases and exciting new services for both consumers and a range of different industries, the underlying technology is being designed from the ground-up to be both flexible and robust, said the companies. Developing to an industry-wide standard and a strong ecosystem will allow 5G to deliver on its promises, they noted.

Both companies will continue to be proactive on interoperability including adopting 5G New Radio standards expected to be released by 3GPP from 2018.


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