Categories: Mobile

SoftBank Aims For Two-Year 5G Headstart In Japan

Japan-based SoftBank Corp. said it is two years ahead of schedule on its release for 5G technology in the country, and it hopes the early release will help it to get a jump on the competition, according to reports.

The wireless carrier, which is a part of the SoftBank Group, planned to put in 11,210 base stations around Japan, which would cover more than 60 percent of the country. The original goal was for all that to be done by 2025, but the company is going to hire more workers and speed up its construction schedule to get everything done by early 2023.

The company plans to launch a commercial 5G service by March 2020 with base stations constructed by Ericsson and Nokia. Many telecom companies around the world are working on 5G technology, thought to be the next leap forward in wireless technology.

Softbank said it is going to use multiple antennas at its base stations to stop slowdowns in service, as well as artificial intelligence to make sure the transmission is good.

Softbank rivals KDDI and NTT Docomo are also looking into upping their timetables.

Another telecom company in the country, Rakuten, postponed its full-service launch to next spring.

Telecom company Verizon has outfitted 13 U.S. NFL stadiums with its 5G wireless service, allowing fans to watch demos of multi-angle instant replays.

In March, Verizon and the NFL announced an exclusive partnership to create 5G-enhanced services for fans attending games.

“It’s the start of [a] journey, and 5G is a big enabler,” Verizon Communications Inc. Chief Executive Officer Hans Vestberg said in an interview. “We’re bringing new experiences to the seats, and we’ll see that this is how the fans will enjoy football in the future.”

In addition, AT&T will let attendees at the Dallas Cowboys’ stadium play with 5G devices.

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