Singtel completed a trial of reduced capability (RedCap) technology on its 5G network, partnering with Ericsson and MediaTek to claim a first in Singapore in transitioning IoT devices from LTE to New Radio (NR).

In a statement, the operator explained migrating to NR provides significantly better connectivity and more reliable user experiences, and enables 5G capabilities including network slicing and mobile edge computing which support the development of new use cases.

RedCap is an upgrade to existing 5G networks designed for low-power IoT devices.

The month-long trial was conducted at five standalone (SA) 5G locations in Singapore, using Ericsson’s RedCap platform and a MediaTek testing device.

Singtel MD for networks in Singapore Tay Yeow Lian stated RedCap reduces the complexity, size and capabilities of device platforms, enabling cost-efficient integration into IoT devices. 

Raymond Soh, head of network solutions for Ericsson Singapore and Philippines, noted RedCap will enable new services on SA networks, broadening the ecosystem and creating new revenue streams in both the consumer and industrial sectors.

MediaTek estimates RedCap can reduce power consumption for end-users and the footprint of chipsets by 60 per cent compared with existing 4G IoT devices, while Ericsson predicted a potential reduction in IoT device production costs of 50 per cent to 70 per cent.