SK Telecom to join consultative body for 5G

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SK Telecom to join consultative body for 5G

Global telecommunication providers, including the nation’s largest mobile carrier, SK Telecom, will join device manufacturers to form a cooperative consultative body to discuss standards for a new fifth-generation mobile communications network, also known as 5G, the company said Wednesday.

A total of 15 companies will participate, including telecommunication providers SK Telecom, AT&T, Deutsche Telekom and China Mobile, and device manufacturers Ericsson, Nokia, Samsung, Huawei, Intel and LG.

The cooperative body will discuss ways to ensure interoperability with existing networks, including fourth-generation long term evolution, or LTE, networks. The group is also expected to discuss early-stage system standards for 5G as well as ways to further develop the technology.

The fifth-generation mobile network is expected have higher internet connection speeds along with other improvements such as expanded coverage and higher signal efficiency.

The new body will have a consultative relationship with an existing international organization called the 3rd Generation Partnership Project (3GPP), which has been authorized to set telecommunications standards and hopes to establish initial standards for 5G networks by 2018. Industry experts are now focused on how the newly-formed cooperative body will affect decisions by 3GPP.

While 3GPP has already begun discussions this year on 5G standardization, it will take time as it plans to establish standards in stages. Once all details of the standards are set, commercialization of 5G will begin.

“To successfully commercialize 5G and take the lead in longer-term technological developments after the launch of 5G, cooperation with global telecommunication providers and device manufacturers is a must,” said Park Jin-hyo, head of SK Telecom’s network technology research and development center.

SK Telecom has been working with device makers such as Ericsson, Nokia and Samsung to jointly develop devices and technology for 5G.

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