Deutsche Telekom teams with SK Telecom on 5G, IoT R&D

BARCELONA, Spain -- Deutsche Telekom forged a technology development partnership with South Korean operator SK Telecom covering the Internet of Things and development of 5G standards.

The German operator said the strategic partnership -- announced on day two of the Mobile World Congress, here -- aims to open the door to new growth opportunities in European and Asia Pacific markets. Deutsche Telekom and SK Telecom will seek to develop standardised technologies including software-defined data centres (SDDC), which the operator said will be a key 5G enabling technology.

In a statement announcing the partnership, Deutsche Telekom CEO Tim Höttges said the aim is to "create an amazing technology partnership with tangible results," and is "also about learning from each other."

Deutsche Telekom said it will conduct a feasibility test covering the potential commercialisation of a cloud streaming product provided by SK Telecom's subsidiary Entrix. The German operator said it will aim to launch the streaming product in the second quarter of 2016, and that the move will establish a beachhead for the South Korean operator to expand sales of the product in Europe.

In terms of 5G R&D, the partners will pay particular attention to network slicing and mobile edge computing as part of a contribution to global standardisation efforts, Deutsche Telekom stated.

SK Telecom plans to launch a Deutsche Telekom in-vehicle Wi-Fi product in its domestic market, and the partners will also jointly seek out quality improvements covering international roaming services, with a particular focus on LTE roaming and service level agreements.

Jang Dong-hyun, president and CEO of SK Telecom, said the two operators will jointly "unlock new growth opportunities and pave the way for the future ICT industry."

Deutsche Telekom separately announced it is using MWC16 to demonstrate an end-to-end multivendor 5G system.

The operator said its 5G:haus research laboratory is conducting the demo, which utilises a unique, flexible, software-defined architecture based on open industry interfaces. A key element of the demonstration is network slicing, which Deutsche Telekom CTO Bruno Jacobfeuerborn explained is designed to "provide differentiated connectivity quickly and efficiently for future industry use cases, as well as the mass mobile broadband-like connectivity" for 5G technology.

Deutsche Telekom said the 5G:haus is also collaborating with Huawei, Samsung and Stanford University to demonstrate technologies including virtual reality, massive IoT, and tactile internet used to provide real-time control of robots.

For more:
- see this SK Telecom partnership announcement
- read Deutsche Telekom's 5G demo release

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