Alcatel-Lucent and Korean operator KT will explore 5G through the vendor's virtualised Radio Access Network (vRAN), after they signed a new partnership deal.
Both companies said the new memorandum of understanding would pave the way for KT to meet the predicted demands for forthcoming Internet of Things networks.
The agreement covers mobile ultra-broadband access, network functions virtualisation and software defined networking, as well as 3GPP standardisation.
The vendor showcased its vRAN solution at March's Mobile World Congress, displaying how it can improve network performance while lowering running costs. A-L's own CloudBand NFV platform is being deployed in more than 30 projects and has an ecosystem of more than 60 members.
DongMyun Lee, CTO and Senior Vice President of KT said: “KT recognises Alcatel-Lucent as a global leader in vRAN and SDN. We are eager to use their vRAN and SDN technology to help us implement the 5G architecture that we have defined in our GiGatopia Vision.”
South Korea is the world's most developed mobile market, with government figures revealing in February that 72 percent of mobile subscribers owned a smartphone. KT said it wanted to use 5G to offer a high-quality seamless mobile experience that delivers a range of different money making offers.
Chi Il Yoo, Head of Alcatel-Lucent Korea, added: “We are fully aligned with KT’s vision and committed to help KT in its strategic network evolution. We see NFV technologies, such as vRAN as a vital step in this evolution.”