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LG U+ opens its 5G innovation lab to start-ups and SMEs

Apr 04,2019
Mobile carrier LG U+ launched an innovation lab Wednesday to offer support to start-ups and small- and medium-sized companies looking to develop 5G-network based products and services.

The 5G Innovation Lab offers technological support, devices and space for small companies to develop 5G-based ideas and commercialize them. In the 230-square-meter (2,475-square-foot) space, researchers can test their ideas.

The lab’s opening ceremony was held Wednesday ahead of the official commercialization of 5G and the launch of the Samsung Galaxy S10 5G on Friday.

“The six key services [LG] plans to offer through the 5G network are artificial reality (AR), virtual reality (VR), baseball games, golf games, cloud-based gaming and celebrity content,” said a spokesperson for LG Electronics on Wednesday in Magok-dong, western Seoul. “We believe the 5G network could change the way people enjoy [entertainment] by giving them the right to choose the scene they hope to watch from the angle they prefer.

“To make such a service possible, we have collaborated with various start-ups and small- and medium-sized firms … We decided to open the innovation lab to build a proper 5G ecosystem by tackling the difficulties [developers face when trying to] test and verify 5G-based ideas.”

The lab will play a key role in creating an environment where conglomerates and smaller firms can co-exist, according to LG.

Researchers and developers at the innovation lab are offered stable 5G networks as well as devices that can be used to test their ideas. Providing such support is crucial in that the devices and the infrastructure required for testing 5G-based ideas are costly, according to the company.

“We will promote the lab into a space where 5G-related service and devices are developed,” the spokesperson said. LG expects around 1,000 firms to use the lab.

LG is working on some 100 core technologies that are largely divided into 14 categories like VR, artificial intelligence and big data. The company also plans to acquire smaller firms when deemed necessary for co-developing ideas and commercializing them. Through 5G technology, users can enjoy interactive experiences like going on virtual dates with K-pop stars or watching every move of their favorite baseball player from a range of angles.

To expand the influence of the innovation lab, LG U+ signed a strategic alliance with Japanese telecommunications operator KDDI. It is said to be working on commercializing a 5G network.

The two companies plan to share information and collaborate on developing 5G-based services.


BY JIN MIN-JI [jin.minji@joongang.co.kr]


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