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TM and Digi to conduct 5G network sharing trials in Langkawi

Telekom Malaysia (TM) and Digi have announced a collaboration which will enable both parties to test out the capabilities, possibilities and limitations of 5G network sharing between multiple network service operators. The trials will be conducted in Langkawi as part of the 5G Demonstration Projects.

According to the official press announcement, Digi which currently has 5G sites with 5G radio network and 5G core to run its use cases will utilise TM’s fibre backhaul access. This showcases the synergy between fixed and mobile network operators in delivering 5G solutions. Both Digi and TM have also agreed to explore 5G Radio Access Network (RAN) sharing on the island.

Commenting on the collaboration, TM’s Group CEO, Dato’ Noor Kamarul said, “We are very excited to enter into this collaboration with Digi; which reflects TM’s commitment, openness and neutrality to work together with industry players, towards achieving the Government’s aspiration for a more cost-effective 5G deployment.”

Meanwhile, Digi CEO Albert Murty, said: “Through our partnership with TM, we continue to be committed to build a robust 5G ecosystem with the industry. We have always viewed partnerships as a positive way to deliver efficient and widespread access to Malaysians, and work is well underway with several of Digi’s use case trials deployed through numerous partnerships in Langkawi and the 5G OpenLab in Cyberjaya.”

Rolling out 5G will be a costly investment and operators are encouraged to collaborate to reduce cost and to prevent duplication of infrastructure. As announced by MCMC, the 700MHz and 3.5GHz spectrum bands for 5G will be assigned to a single entity in the form of a consortium. A few months ago, Celcom and Maxis have signed an MoU to explore the possibility of 5G RAN sharing.

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Alexander Wong