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Taiwan Mobile taps Nokia in energy-efficient 5G coverage expansion deal

Deal will see delivery of enhanced 5G Standalone Core technology to support expanded 5G coverage across key Asian territory using energy-efficient technology portfolio, including slicing and low-latency edge cloud

As part of its expansion plan to enhance 5G coverage across the country, Taiwan Mobile (TWM) has selected Nokia to provide technology to support its commitments to RE100 – reaching 100% renewable energy by 2040.

Founded in 1997, TWM is Taiwan’s second largest telco, providing mobile, fixed-line, cable TV and broadband services. In the 5G era, it is repositioning itself as a next-generation technology company that will lead the next revolution in the telecommunications, internet, media and entertainment, and e-commerce sectors by implementing a “6C” strategy: coverage, convergence, content, channel, cloud and corporate social responsibility.

TWM said it would propel its transformation into a regional enterprise by following the 5“G”+ guidelines of Gift, Group, Grit, Green and GSEA. That is using its in-house big data and user base (Gift); creating more synergy with momo, AppWorks, Kbro and the Fubon Group (Group); with sustainability in mind (Green); over a 10 to 15-year time horizon (Grit); to expand footholds in Southeast Asia (GSEA).

In Taiwan’s spectrum auction in January 2020, the operator claimed 60MHz in the 3.5GHz band and 200MHz in the 28GHz band. It currently has over a million 5G subscribers.

Nokia is a long-standing partner of TWM, having worked with the operator for more than 20 years, and has previously provided 2G, 3G and 4G mobile networks covering RAN, packet core and voice core. It has also made several contributions to the Taiwanese operator’s 5G development, including projects on smart logistics, smart transportation and smart stadiums, including a demonstration of a 5G network with extended coverage at the Xinzhuang Baseball Stadium in New Taipei City. In June 2020, TWN selected the Finnish technology firm as the sole supplier to its 5G network in a three-year framework contract.

In the new deal, Nokia will provide equipment from its AirScale portfolio, including base stations and massive MIMO antennas to boost network performance and capacity. The deal also covers the introduction of 4G/5G dynamic spectrum sharing to maximise the advantages of TWM’s spectrum assets, which include 700MHz and 2100MHz bands. Nokia will help the operator modernise its LTE infrastructure, as well as consolidate the network management and optimisation under a centralised tool for a superior 4G/5G RAN network performance. 

Nokia will also expand its existing 5G Standalone Core at Taiwan Mobile to enable the operator to provide advanced 5G applications, such as network slicing for enterprises and businesses and edge cloud deployments for low-latency services. The deployment will include Nokia AirFrame server hardware with multi-access edge computing (MEC) capabilities, IMS Voice Core capacity expansion, and Voice over New Radio (VoNR). It will also provide a smooth network evolution path for TWM following the completion of the proposed merger with Taiwan Star.

“Nokia has been our go-to partner for more than two decades and their performance during the 5G era so far has been nothing but brilliant,” said Taiwan Mobile president Jamie Lin.

“By doubling down on their cutting-edge technologies with this newly awarded order, we aim to upgrade and expand our 5G network to deliver resilient connectivity and expanded coverage to our subscribers and enterprises alike, while at the same time accelerate our sustainability agenda and contribute to a greener Earth. By working hand in hand with Nokia, I have full confidence we can get the best of both worlds.”

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