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Smart stages 5G Technofest with Nokia

PLDT and its wireless arm Smart Communications, Inc. showcased the fifth-generation (5G) wireless broadband technologies and services in a 5G Technofest held with Nokia in Makati City.

This activity is part of the memorandum of understanding (MoU) recently signed by PLDT, Smart and Nokia to pilot 5G standalone (5G SA) in the country and collaborate in identifying real world solutions such as artificial intelligence, drones, and Internet of Things applications.

“5G will jumpstart the next wave of unforeseen innovations. We look forward to the potential new revenue streams on top of mobile broadband data, and the creation of an ecosystem of industrial partners that will try out and adapt specific 5G use cases to address specific needs and requirements—new use cases that we can now do in 5G but were not previously possible using 4G technology,” said Czar Lopez, head of PLDT-Smart Technology Strategy and Transformation Office.

“This Technofest is for all of us PLDT-Smart employees to be involved in and continue to be aware of what we are doing in 5G, and continue with our knowledge build-up,” Lopez added.
Among the technologies displayed during the Technofest were augmented reality/virtual reality, 5G base stations and customer premises equipment, and drones.

Andrew Cope, Nokia country head for the Philippines, also cited new business areas like robotics, automation and improved entertainment as among the opportunities that Nokia sees in 5G, a technology that has the potential to ramp-up productivity levels and change the future.

“5G has been referred to as a universal technology, like the wheel or the combustion engine. It has that much potential to change the way we live and work in the future. Nokia Bell Labs research indicates that productivity could grow by as much as 30% in country GDP because of 5G in the next 20 years,” Cope said.

Cope cited the launch of GSM services in the country 20 years ago as a milestone between Smart and Nokia. “In April 1999, we launched the first dual-band GSM network, transforming the way people communicate in the Philippines. Today marks the start of a new journey where we try to transform the industry and the way the Philippines connects and grows and lives, again.”