SoftBank selected Ericsson and Nokia as its 5G radio equipment suppliers, delivering another heavy (but expected) blow to embattled Huawei, which had conducted trials of the next-generation mobile technology with the operator.
The mobile operator, the third largest in Japan, acquired spectrum in the 3.9GHz and 29GHz bands and is targeting the launch of commercial mobile 5G services sometime in 2020.
In December 2018 SoftBank, along with rivals NTT Docomo and KDDI, announced it doesn’t plan to deploy gear from Huawei and ZTE in the new network, following a ban on the use of Chinese telecoms equipment by government agencies in the country.
SoftBank is the only major player in Japan to use Huawei and ZTE equipment in its 4G network and conducted 5G trials with both vendors.
In separate statements, Nokia said the operator will deploy its 5G AirScale product across Japan, while Ericsson said its radio system will be rolled out in several regions.
Ericsson and SoftBank started joint proof-of-concept activities in 2015 and expanded their collaboration to include 5G testing of multiple bands.
Nokia said it is a long-time supplier of multiple technologies to SoftBank.Subscribe to our daily newsletter Back