Sonera tests Nokia’s 5G, XG-FAST solution

Nokia 5G

Finland –

Sonera, the Finnish arm of the leading Nordic operator Telia Company, has trialed Nokia’s 5G mobile networking and new copper cable technologies capable of delivering data speeds of up to 10 Gbps.

The trial was conducted at Sonera headquarters in Helsinki. The trial in August was built around a 5G-ready network using the commercially available Nokia AirScale Base Station and a core network solution*. The high-speed, low-latency 5G network was used to deliver, among other things, high resolution video footage shot using OZO, Nokia’s virtual reality camera for professionals. Using the 4.5 GHz frequency, this aspect of the trial reached data throughput speeds of over 4.5 Gbps.

Sonera also tested Nokia’s XG-FAST solution, the fixed broadband technology developed by Nokia Bell Labs which allows existing copper cables to deliver high-speed fixed broadband, saving service providers having to install new cabling. XG-FAST technology can reach transmission speeds of up to 10 Gbps in a traditional copper cable and it is intended for short copper loops. XG-FAST technology is hence well-fitted, for instance, for projects related to FTTB/Fiber To The Basement. Using the XG-FAST technology makes sense when a high-speed connection is required over a large area quickly and cost-effectively, using existing copper cables.

The demonstrations follow a cooperation agreement signed between Telia Company and Nokia in July 2016 aimed at accelerating Sonera’s network evolution to 5G. The goal of the cooperation is to keep Sonera at the forefront of both present and future network technologies. Sonera and Nokia will carry out further tests to enable early 5G readiness and to secure early introduction of commercial 5G services for Sonera customers. Sonera’s 5G testing is also well underway in the company’s own laboratory environment.

Sonera and Nokia recently also trialed* small cell technology to boost network capacity at the Flow Festival, a music festival held in Helsinki on 12-14 August. Small cells – which can increase capacity efficiently in a variety of areas – will play a key role in future 5G networks, meeting their needs for increased capacity and lower latency.

* A 5G-ready network was built with around the commercially-available Nokia AirScale base station. The Nokia Cloud Packet Core solution was running on a Nokia AirFrame data center platform. Sonera and Nokia tested 5G connections with 4.5 GHz frequency using MIMO antenna technology.

Timo Hietalahti, head of Network Architecture and Development at Sonera, said, “Combining mobile and fixed technologies, and making sure those technologies function well together, is more important than ever in future network solutions. 5G has a key role in the Internet of Things and virtual reality solutions, and in order to provide for the explosive growth of mobile traffic we see already now, all technologies allowing us to best utilize fixed networks are needed. Nokia is our longstanding technology partner, and it will play a critical role in our path to 5G.”

Tommi Uitto, senior vice president for global product sales at Nokia Mobile Networks, said, “The world is going mobile and mobile is going fixed. At Nokia, we constantly strive to innovate in mobile and fixed technologies, helping our customers migrate and update their networks and prepare for the future so they can cater to the needs of bandwidth-hungry subscribers. 5G is just around the corner, and we’re making it happen.”