SoftBank is committed to launch 5G commercial services in 2019 by jointly exploring 5G use cases with Ericsson.
SoftBank has also selected Ericsson as a primary 5G vendor for the deployment of a multi-band 5G network in Japan following a series of successful joint proof-of-concept activities that began in 2015.
Under the agreement, Ericsson will provide SoftBank with radio access network equipment, including products from the Ericsson Radio System portfolio. This will enable SoftBank to launch 5G services on their newly granted 3.9-4.0 GHz and 29.1-29.5 GHz bands for 5G New Radio (NR).
Ericsson will reinforce SoftBank’s existing LTE network while optimizing its 5G network. Ericsson Radio System products for this purpose will be deployed in several regions. With Ericsson Radio System, SoftBank can boost its spectrum assets.
Chris Houghton, Senior Vice President, Head of Market Area North East Asia, Ericsson said, “SoftBank and Ericsson have been partners since the 2G era and we are thrilled to support them on this latest part of their technology journey. With the help of our advanced product portfolio, SoftBank can unlock the potential of 5G for Japanese society and we look forward to building on our long-standing partnership.”
Ericsson and SoftBank initiated joint proof-of-concept activities in 2015 and have successfully expanded their collaboration to include 5G testing of multi-bands, including 28 GHz and 4.5 GHz.