Ericsson and Finnish mobile operator Elisa have established what they claim to be the first end-to-end 5G Standalone connection in Finland, the vendor said in a release.
Ericsson also said that this milestone also represents the first 5G standalone pilot in the Nordic region and will enable more advanced 5G use cases for both consumer and corporate customers.
Kalle Lehtinen, CTO, Elisa, said: “Elisa started to test 5G technology years before its launch in 2019. Now, together with Ericsson, we again walk a few steps ahead and look to the future of 5G. Although this was a pilot, it’s a big step towards even faster, more reliable and efficient 5G that will benefit our customers in the near future.”
Ericsson said that SA 5G will enable applications that require ultra-low latency such as augmented and virtual reality (AR/VR), smart factories and connected vehicles. The vendor also highlighted that a Standalone 5G device can connect six times faster to a SA 5G network than a device operating in non-Standalone (NSA) mode.
“Elisa and Ericsson have always been united in our dedication towards a sustainable and connected future. We are incredibly pleased to continue our journey together as Elisa’s trusted partner, reaching all 2.8 million of their customers with our superior connectivity, and now innovating with our leading 5G portfolio. The low-latency benefits of 5G will be multiplied by utilizing 5G standalone connectivity, and alongside Elisa we will unlock more solutions to transform both society and industry,” said Jenny Lindqvist, head of Northern and Central Europe for Ericsson.
In March, Elisa unveiled nine 5G solutions at its 5G showroom in Helsinki, including a mobile app for 3D models and high-resolution live streaming, a 360-degree virtual reality live streaming with 8K resolution and a tractor that can be controlled remotely with 5G and a 360-degree camera.
Elisa initially launched its commercial 5G network in 2019 and now offers this technology in several cities across Finland. Elisa has so far launched 5G networks in Helsinki, Espoo, Tampere, Vantaa, Oulu, Turku, Jyväskylä, Lahti, Kuopio, Pori, Kouvola, Joensuu, Vaasa, Seinäjoki, Hyvinkää, Rauma, Raisio, Heinola and Kuusamo.
In July, Ericsson had announced the general availability of Standalone (SA) 5G New Radio software. The software became globally available to all customers in June, Ericsson said, and at launch, had already been tested by network operators including T-Mobile US and Telstra.
The vendor said that all of its Ericsson Radio System equipment deployed since 2015 is capable of being upgraded to SA 5G NR with a software installation. The SA software solidifies Ericsson’s claim to an end-to-end SA 5G NR solution that combines its radio portfolio with its Ericsson 5G Core offering, plus the SA 5G software for low- to mid-band spectrum.
In August, Ericsson announced it had secured the company’s 100th commercial 5G agreement or contract with unique communications service providers. The Swedish vendor said that this figure includes 58 publicly announced contracts and 56 live 5G networks globally.
Some key customers include AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile US, US Cellular, Verizon, Bell Canada, Telus, Rogers, Swisscom, TDC, Telenor, Vodafone UK, Wind , Deutsche Telkom, O2 UK, Etisalat, Optus, Ooredoo, Orange France, Vodafone UK, STC, KT, SK Telecom and Telstra.