South Korean mobile carrier SK Telecom announced that it is in discussion with Citadel and IT&E to deploy a 5G network in Guam and Saipan.
In a statement, SKT and IT&E will work together to commercialize the 5G network with fixed wireless access (FWA) offering in Guam and Saipan in the second half of 2019.
SKT said IT&E has already secured 1150MHz bandwidth in the 28-GHz frequency band for 5G communications and aims to become the first operator to launch commercial service in the region.
The 5G network will initially cover dense central areas of cities, local business customers, and areas that lacked fixed broadband infrastructure. This will be expanded gradually to wider areas.
According to SKT, the decision to deploy 5G FWA initially came as a result of an analysis of the region’s fixed broadband infrastructure, topographic features and the needs of residential and enterprise customers. FWA provides IT&E with a more cost-effective and efficient alternative to offer broadband services in areas with limited access to fixed broadband infrastructure.
As part of the collaboration, SKT will help IT&E design a 5G network optimized for the local environment, support network deployment and perform field trials and network optimization.
SKT said the pair have also discussed cooperation in other areas, such as deploying SK Telecom’s security solutions to IT&E’s 5G network, and adopting mobile edge computing and quantum cryptography technologies to enable faster and safer 5G services.