TM, Digi collaborate to test out 5G network in Langkawi

A woman uses a smartphone as she walks pass a 5G logo during the launch of the 5G Showcase in Putrajaya April 18, 2019. — Picture by Mukhriz Hazim
A woman uses a smartphone as she walks pass a 5G logo during the launch of the 5G Showcase in Putrajaya April 18, 2019. — Picture by Mukhriz Hazim

KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 9 — Telekom Malaysia Bhd (TM) and Digi Telecommunications Sdn Bhd (Digi), both currently participating in the 5G Demonstration Project (5GDP) undertaken by the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC), have agreed to work together in testing the capabilities, possibilities and limitations of 5G network sharing between multiple network service operators during the 5GDP period.

In a statement jointly issued by TM and Digi, both network operators said they are working together to test out the 5G network sharing for the 5GDP rollout on Langkawi island.

Under the partnership, Digi is currently operating its 5GDP sites (including on-site 5G radio network and 5G core network) in Langkawi to run its 5G use cases, supported by TM in providing fibre backhaul to these sites.

This portrays the synergy between fixed and mobile network operators in delivering 5G connectivity solutions.

Additionally, both parties are also exploring 5G Radio Access Network (RAN) sharing in Langkawi.

The Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on the partnership was signed by TM chief strategy officer Tengku Muneer Tengku Muzani while Digi was represented by chief technology officer Kesavan Sivabalan.

Commenting on the latest development, TM group chief executive officer (CEO) Datuk Noor Kamarul Annuar Nuruddin said collaboration with Digi reflects TM’s commitment, openness and neutrality to work together with industry players, towards achieving the Government’s aspiration for a more cost-effective 5G deployment.

“We aspire to not only enable the ecosystem but also plan to be a neutral partner for industry players and collaboration partners towards serving a more digital society and lifestyle, digital businesses and industry verticals, as well as digital Government.

“The collaboration is also hoped to accelerate the delivery of 5G services nationwide and bring enormous benefits to end customers as we strive to deploy 5G services to Malaysians nationwide, in line with MCMC’s aspiration in progressing humanity towards improving the quality of lives of the rakyat,” he said.

Noor Kamarul added that TM has rolled-out the first 5G Standalone (SA) dedicated network in the country.

“TM, via our innovative and comprehensive products and solutions, will continue to lay the foundation for Industrial Revolution 4.0 (IR4.0) and enabling Internet of Things (IoT) – to serve a more digital society and lifestyle, digital businesses and industry verticals, as well as digital Government,” he said.

Meanwhile, Digi CEO Albern Murty said through the partnership with TM, Digi continues to be committed to building a robust 5G ecosystem with the industry.

“We have always viewed partnerships as a positive way to deliver efficient and widespread access to Malaysians, and work is well underway with several of Digi’s use case trials deployed through numerous partnerships in Langkawi and the 5G OpenLab in Cyberjaya.

“The findings we gather from these trials will help determine how we can rollout 5G in a more concerted way across industry, echoing MCMC’s ambitions towards a shared approach in deploying 5G for the country,” he said.

In Langkawi, Digi has implemented two 5G use cases, namely virtual tourism at the Langkawi International Airport, and real-time medical data transfer and connected ambulance at Hospital Sultanah Maliha.

TM has already embarked on a total of 11 use cases in Langkawi covering Smart City, Smart Tourism and Smart Agriculture clusters, focusing on making life easier, meeting the needs, and enriching the lives of the rakyat.

Malaysia’s 5GDP kickstarted in October 2019, with the aim to facilitate, build and nurture development of promising use cases of 5G in a live but controlled environment; and in a broader context, grow the 5G ecosystem in Malaysia.

During this period, participating telecommunications companies are actively testing new 5G features, exploring 5G technology and assessing the best way to deploy 5G infrastructure nationwide. — Bernama

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