SK Telecom and Ericsson to collaborate on 5G network slicing

  • Two companies sign an MOU to develop and deploy 5G core network
  • Network slicing technology set to play key role in meeting the demands of 5G use cases

SK Telecom (NYSE:SKM) today announced that it has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Ericsson (NASDAQ: ERIC) to collaborate on the development of a 5G core network that deploys network slicing technology.

Under the terms of the agreement, SK Telecom and Ericsson will develop and deploy network slicing technology optimized for 5G services. The two companies will also continue their existing partnership to build a joint 5G test bed starting this year with the ambition to provide the world’s most advanced end to end 5G pilot services.

5G introduces services with widely varying service requirements. For example, offerings such as virtual reality, augmented reality, super multi-view video streaming, and holograms require the network to deliver a large amount of content in real-time with minimal delay. On the other hand, there are also services such as the Internet of Things, where sensors sporadically send and receive small amounts of data on a massive scale simultaneously. Designing and implementing a single 5G network architecture that can satisfy these diverse service requirements has therefore been identified as one of the most challenging tasks.

With 5G network slicing technology, SK Telecom is expected to secure a strong competitive edge in the 5G era as the technology significantly enhances the network’s operational efficiency and reduces the time required to deploy new services over its 5G network.

As part of this collaboration effort, the two companies also have the intention to build the world’s first 5G ready Hyperscale Data Center System which guarantees high performance and reliability for IT and virtualized telco services.

“Virtual network architecture, including network slicing, is critical to supporting new services in the era of 5G,” says Alex Jinsung Choi, CTO at SK Telecom. “We will build an optimal network for a wide array of services from the overall end-to-end standpoint, and pioneer the evolution of innovative networks.”

Ulf Ewaldsson, CTO at Ericsson, says: “Network slicing, based on virtual Evolved Packet Core, is an important part of the technology evolution of 5G, supporting operators with a new, broader set of services. We look forward to bringing 5G to life together with SK Telecom.”

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