Taiwan Mobile rolls out 5G standalone core with Nokia

Nokia has deployed a 5G standalone core network for Taiwan Mobile, building on the partners’ network deal announced last year.

Nokia in 2020 won a three-year deal as the sole supplier for Taiwan Mobile’s 5G radio access network (RAN), core and IMS. Taiwan Mobile started with 5G non-standalone deployment last year. Under the deal, worth about EUR 400 million, the partners aimed to migrate from the NSA version, which still relies on existing 4G, to SA 5G by mid-2023.

Already the Finnish vendor has deployed voice core, cloud packet core, subscriber data management, signaling, network exposure, policy controller, cloud infrastructure and security management for radio transport as part of the contract.

RELATED: Nokia scores $450M 5G contract with Taiwan Mobile

Now with SA 5G geared up to go, Taiwan Mobile is prepping for more advanced 5G services that target businesses and enterprise. That includes features like network slicing and more robust network services and performance for things like smart city solutions, with an eye on providing ultra-low latency and massive IoT.

“Owning the agility of network slicing to swiftly customize the network for accommodating different use cases, Taiwan Mobile will be able to accelerate time-to-market to provide a wide variety of services for everyone and everything and to free enterprises to embrace Industry 4.0,” said Tom Koh, SVP and CTO, Technology Group at Taiwan Mobile, in a statement. “The SA technology is built from cloud architecture, infrastructure-agnostic by design, which paves a critical step to a full software agile virtualization network.”

On Friday Taiwan Mobile said it was the first to pass the National Communication Council’s 5G SA system certification. Koh noted that its first effort is to create 5G networks for private companies during the initial deployment.

"As Taiwan Mobile is finalizing the construction of 5G SA framework, we will also provide our corporate clients with dedicated 5G cell towers in conjunction with the company's core network services, working hand in hand with them to develop a vertical application of 5G related services," said Taiwan Mobile Chief Enterprise Business Officer C. H. Wu.

RELATED: Nokia touts 5G carrier aggregation trial with Taiwan Mobile

Over the summer Taiwan Mobile and Nokia claimed a “world’s first” for New Radio carrier aggregation that combined spectrum in the 700 MHz and 3500 MHz bands and took place in an SA 5G environment.

Taiwan Mobile was one of the operators that scooped up spectrum licenses at auction in 2020, including 60-megahertz in the 3.5 GHz band and 200 MHz in the 28 GHz band.

A Q2 2021 mobile core network report from Dell’Oro Group showed Nokia maintained its position as a leading vendor, behind Huawei and Ericsson and ahead of ZTE and Mavenir.

Nokia counts 25 of the top 40 communications service providers as customers of its core network products.