Deutsche Telekom and SK Telecom will invest in areas including edge computing and quantum cryptography
German telco Deutsche Telekom and Korean carrier SK Telecom have entered into a cross=investment agreement, aiming to strengthen their competitiveness in 5G.
Under the agreement, SK Telecom plans to invest in MobiledgeX, an edge computing company founded by Deutsche Telekom and headquartered in Menlo Park, California. MobiledgeX focuses on delivering developer-facing edge computing services. Deutsche Telekom plans to invest the same amount in ID Quantique (IDQ), SK Telecom’s strategic partner in quantum cryptography communication technology. IDQ is based in Switzerland.
Going forward, SK Telecom and Deutsche Telekom plan to share their technologies and knowhow. The two companies highlighted that they have made their cross-investment decision as a strategy to gain leadership in the 5G era by offering specialized 5G services with ultra-low latency in areas like telemedicine as well as augmented and virtual reality, while addressing potential security threats.
“SK Telecom is pleased to enter into a cross-investment agreement with Deutsche Telekom, as it will serve as a valuable opportunity for us to further solidify our 5G leadership in the global market and drive new growth,” said Park Jung-ho, president and CEO of SK Telecom.
“We look forward to intensifying our successful cooperation with SK Telecom. The partnership will help both companies to strengthen our global technology leadership and bring 5G and other innovative services to our customers,” said Timotheus Höttges, CEO of Deutsche Telekom.
Deutsche Telekom and SK Telecom aims to use mobile edge computing technologies to reduce data transfer time. With mobile edge computing, companies can conduct on-site monitoring of disaster-affected areas and respond faster to traffic accidents.
Moreover, Deutsche Telekom is reviewing the idea of adopting quantum cryptography communication systems. Both SK Telecom and Deutsche Telekom are currently in the process of qualifying quantum cryptography technologies on their respective trial networks.
Earlier this month, the German carrier said it expects to launch commercial 5G services in 2020. In May 2018, Deutsche Telekom announced the deployment of the first 5G antennas to test the technology in downtown Berlin. The antennas, which are based on 5G New Radio, allowed Deutsche Telekom to demonstrate what it claimed to be Europe’s first 5G data connection over a live network. The telco said that it is currently in the process of deploying a 5G cluster in Berlin.
SK Telecom recently selected Samsung Electronics, Nokia and Ericsson as preferred bidders for its 5G network equipment ahead of its launch of commercial 5G services in March 2019. Earlier this month, SK Telecom completed the first call in a test bed using commercial 5G equipment provided by compatriot firm Samsung Electronics.
The carrier said the test utilized the 3GPP 5G New Radio Non-standalone (NSA) specification and commercial 5G NR equipment. The call took place at the company’s 5G testbed located in its Bundang office building. SK Telecom and Samsung carried out the test by using 100 megahertz of bandwidth in the 3.5 GHz band.
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