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Malaysian Mobile Operators Load Up on 5G

With all the 5G news hitting our inboxes, we have rounded up a couple of resources on what the future holds for its rollout in the country. 

People are expecting to get 5G network connection by 2020 and with so many streaming services emerging from the market this year, it will be a seminal year for telecommunications, media, entertainment industries such as AR/VR, e-sportsIoT, and smart lifestyle. 

The rapid speed of technological advancement has resulted in growing demand for faster and cheaper data. However, technologies such as 5G are expensive for telcos who have no other choice but to invest or risk losing customers.  

The latest partnership between Celcom, Digi and Maxis will help them to combine their expertise in designing, building, commissioning, operating, and maintaining their fibre infrastructure nationwide. This is crucial for developing a 5G network as its implementation requires low latency, faster data speeds, and higher capability to support connected devices. 

Digi Championing 5GDP Initiatives 

To test the capabilities, possibilities and limitations of 5G networks, Telekom Malaysia Bhd. (TM) and Digi Telecommunications Sdn Bhd are working together under the 5G Demonstration Project (5GDP).  

  • Under this partnership, Digi is operating its 5GDP sites including an on-site 5G radio network, 5G core network in Langkawi, and 5G OpenLab in Cyberjaya for trial runs supported by TM who provides fibre backhaul to these sites. 
  • Digi showcases Malaysia’s first 5G-connected ambulance in partnership with Hospital Sultanah Maliha and Collaborative Research in Engineering, Science & Technology (CREST) shared a live demonstration connected to their two 5G live sites in the island of Langkawi. 
  • Partnering with Malaysia Airports Holdings Bhd (MAHB) and Panorama Langkawi, Digi Telecommunications is set to launch Malaysia’s first real-time virtual tourism experience powered by 5G at Langkawi International Airport.  
  • The 5G virtual tourism experience is expected to provide a new immersive and integrated travel experience for the tourists to enjoy. It is open to the public until March this year.   


Maxis adds more value to IoT in Malaysia 

 Maxis will be focusing on Internet of Things (IoT) in 2020 to grow its business.   

  • There’s a lot of demand for IoT services in Malaysia especially for businesses involved in the logistics, agriculture and the utility sector. 
  • The aim is to triple the size of the enterprise business within five years in order to provide more service offerings and cater to more clients, big or small. 
  • Following the MoU between Maxis and Microsoft, Microsoft will share its expertise and knowledge in IoT and Cloud Technology as well as diversifying the applications of Maxis’ offerings in areas like smart cities development, smart utilities, and other connected solutions.  

Smart City solutions with Celcom 

Celcom’s 5G Smart City solutions aim to enhance daily operation matters for local businesses and authorities and enrich the consumers’ digital lifestyles in Langkawi.  

  • 5G is expected to deliver all-rounded connectivity to consumers and businesses with a different experience. Celcom’s 5G network in Langkawi applies 5G New Radio technology that features band spectrum, Massive Multiple-Input and Multiple-Output (MIMO 64T64R) through a 5G Customer Premise Equipment (CPE) technology. 
  • 5G Safety & Security Smart City solution helps to enhance the security monitoring system for enforcement units and make Langkawi a more secure destination to travel to through Celcom’s collaboration with PDRM and MPLPB.  

U Mobile looks into DoctorOnCall

Through the 5G Demonstration Project (5GDP) Langkawi, Telekom Malaysia Bhd (TM) and U Mobile Sdn Bhd also have teamed up to explore network sharing opportunities.  

  • Both parties will be exploring several network infrastructures sharing models such as Multi-Operator Core Node (MOCN) or Multi-Operator Radio Access Network (MORAN).  
  • U Mobile also showcased its partnership with TM by showing what 5G VR can do in the medical industry with MEDCOM (a remote-consultation service that makes use of 5G to enable the medical professional to have hospital-level treatment anywhere and anytime) and;  
  • DoctorOnCall provides similar features but at a GP level which automatically allows uses to receive medical consultations via video from the best doctors in the country.

A study conducted by management consulting firm A.T. Kearney stated that 5G promises to speed up to 50 times faster, 10 times more responsiveness and much lower power connectivity than 5G.  

Furthermore, according to Cisco, 5G services rollout could boost Malaysia’s telecom operators’ annual revenues as much as RM3.764 billion (US$900 million dollars) starting in 2025. GSMA Intelligence yearend report notes that Malaysia has a total of approximately 41M mobile subscribers as of 2019. 

GSMA, the association representing the interests of mobile operators around the world applauds Malaysia’s effort to push towards deploying 5G technology and pointed out that the country is at the forefront of 5g development in Southeast Asia.  

Is Malaysia ready? MCMC chairman Al-Ishsal Ishak says it will go live soon. 

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Fatimah Kairina

The author Fatimah Kairina

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