du set to roll out UAE 5G network in 2018

Saleem AlBlooshi, chief infrastructure officer, Emirates Integrated Telecommunications Company
Saleem AlBlooshi, chief infrastructure officer, Emirates Integrated Telecommunications Company

The availability of 5G services in the UAE is one step closer to reality as du today announced its full readiness and ongoing network evolution to offer 5G network during the course of 2018, ahead of the anticipated commercial rollout of 3GPP-compliant 5G terminals in 2019. 

As part of its 5G readiness, du recently put on air the first 5G site – achieving download throughput of 1.5 Gbps, which was recently demonstrated at du’s headquarters in Dubai Media City.

Preparation of 5G deployment is currently underway in major clusters like Expo 2020, Burj Khalifa Downtown and Yas Island, among others.

Emirates Integrated Telecommunications Company’s chief infrastructure officer Saleem AlBlooshi said, “The commercial availability of 5G terminals, globally, is only expected in 2019 as standards and technologies are still being finalised. As a transparent and innovative company, we are excited to announce our complete network readiness this year, in anticipation of its 2019 roll out.  The mass adoption of 5G in the UAE will completely transform the landscape when it comes to how residents utilise their various connected devices, and further strengthen the Internet of Things (IoT) services in the region, which du provides. This will allow us to offer a number of innovative use cases including Augmented Reality, Artificial Intelligence, Virtual Reality, Internet of Things (IoT), Smart City applications and Remote Surgery, among others.

“Our vision is to open the door to endless possibilities for a new generation, and we are working with best-of-breed global partners to enable us to launch 5G services this year.”

Virtual reality and augmented reality will be two of the main uses of the 5G era, according to du. The firm believes they have huge growth potential, with a market value expected to be approximately $110 billion by 2025.

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