Most countries are still struggling to launch a 5G network, however, one of the two UAE telecom service providers has now initiated a move to introduce the 6G network by 2030.
Du from Emirates Integrated Telecommunications Company (EITC) and Huawei on Sunday signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) on 5.5G strategic cooperation, marking a new phase of their long-standing partnership.
Under the deal, which was signed at Mobile World Congress Barcelona on Sunday, both entities will strengthen cooperation in 5.5G innovation, including technological innovation and E2E network evolution. It will help du to enhance user experience and lead the UAE market in 5.5G development.
As one of the fastest-growing telecommunication operators in the UAE, du works closely with Huawei and has outstanding performance in 5G network experience and service development, capturing a large share of the Middle East market.Du and Huawei will collaborate on 5.5G in three aspects, according to the MoU.
For innovation, they will focus on key technologies, including extremely large antenna array massive Mimo (ELAA-MM), passive IoT, and virtual large carrier among others, and discuss exchange to exchange (E2E) network evolution roadmap.In terms of application exploration, they will conduct research on new scenarios and identify potential applications based on local requirements, such as metaverse, holographic meeting, and XR.
In ecosystem construction, they will work together with local and global industry partners to build a sound 5.5G ecosystem and promote multilateral business success.Saleem Al Blooshi, CTO of du, said is committed to working with industry leaders around the world to create new solutions that help us stay at the forefront of digital innovation.
5.5G, also called 5G-Advanced, is regarded as a bridge between 5G and 6G.
5.5G will provide enhancement to 5G, with the capabilities of 10 times speed and 10 times connections. For example, it will allow a speed of 10Gbps to be reached by any user.
There will also be three features of 5.5G, including Uplink Centric Broadband Communication (UCBC), Harmonised Communication and Sensing (HCS), and Real-time Broadband Communication (RTBC). The standard of new features is still under discussion in the 3GPP.
The 3GPP Release 18, which will give out specifications for 5G Advanced or 5.5G deployment, is likely to be finalized in the first quarter of 2024. This will pave the way for the first 5.5G commercial deployments in 2024.