We are ready for 5G — TM CEO

This article first appeared in The Edge Financial Daily, on January 13, 2020.
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LANGKAWI: Telekom Malaysia Bhd (TM) chief executive officer Datuk Noor Kamarul Anuar Nuruddin said the telecommunications company (telco), currently participating in the 5G Demonstration Project (5GDP) undertaken by the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC), is ready to fully embark on the 5G initiative for the country.

At this point, he said, it is up to the decision by the MCMC to appoint the consortium that will consist of multiple licensees for the allocation of the 5G spectrums.

“We are still bidding for the frequency; we are still at that stage. If the MCMC gives us [the licence] today, we can start working on it today. We are ready. We are preparing a lot of things [for the rollout] and once we get it (the licence), we can get it done,” he said.

Last week, the MCMC announced that the 5G spectrum bands will be rolled out by the third quarter (3Q) this year. The allocation of the 5G spectrums will be done via open tender to be called by 2Q but the details and criteria will be revealed later. A single consortium of multiple licensees will be selected via this tender.

“We are ready to really take the position, it’s just that I think the challenge that the government is facing right now is the question of who will lead the 5G initiative. Once we get that settled, we can go fast. I think especially for us, for TM, we have a good reason to go 5G.

“We believe in the technology, we know we can make it. We know that we can help the country. We can improve the country’s level of security, we can improve our lives by using 5G. That’s why in Telekom, we are bullish about it,” Noor Kamarul added.  

Noor Kamarul was speaking to reporters yesterday after TM’s signing ceremony of memoranda of collaboration (MoC) with Majlis Perbandaran Langkawi Bandaraya Pelancongan and the Langkawi Development Authority for the deployment of its 5G-enabled use cases here.

At the same event, TM also signed MoCs with six other partners based in Langkawi, namely Haji Ismail Group, Nadias Hotel, Hotel Adya Chenang, The Loaf Asia Sdn Bhd, Artisans Pizza and Jabatan Laut Malaysia.

Under these collaborations, the partners agreed to demonstrate use cases developed in-house by TM‘s innovation arm TM Research & Development Sdn Bhd, namely the Smart Safety Helmet, Smart Retail Analytics, Smart Vehicle Management System.

The solutions utilise machine learning and artificial intelligence to identify human behaviour which will then be used to help businesses and local government.

With all these use cases in place and most of it are already up and running, Noor Kamarul claimed that TM has the highest number of 5G use cases among the telcos participating in the 5GDP.

The 5GDP is for TM to test the new 5G features, explore the 5G technology system and assess the best way to deploy 5G infrastructure nationwide.