South Korea’s second largest mobile operator KT said it will complete the construction of a trial 5G network in parts of the country by September 2017 to prepare for a pilot service of the high-speed technology at the 2018 Winter Olympics.
KT will install the 5G network in PyeongChang, the Olympic host city about 180km east of Seoul, its neighbouring regions and parts of Seoul as a test bed, Yonhap reported. The operator plans to test the network for four to five months before it launches a trial 5G service in early February 2018.
KT VP Oh Seong-mok said it set up a trial network in the Gwanghwamun area, downtown Seoul, in October and achieved a transmission speed of 2.3Gb/s, the news agency said.
Last month KT said it will be the first to commercialise 5G in 2019, a year earlier than its previously stated target, and believes the standards used for the 2018 Winter Olympics will become the de facto 5G standards.
The industry consensus is to bring 5G to the market in 2020, with Phase 1 standardisation of the technology due for completion sometime in 2018.
Yesterday Chinese equipment vendor Huawei was named as the official supplier of network equipment for the Winter Olympics in PyeongChang.
Lee Hee-beom (pictured, far left), president and CEO of the PyeongChang Organising Committee for the 2018 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games, and Yan Lida, president of Huawei Enterprise, signed the agreement in Seoul.