Etisalat UAE, branded as etisalat by e&, has completed its first trial of the 6GHz spectrum in the MENA region.
In a statement, the company said: “This trial conducted with Huawei Technologies was integral in today’s technology evolution as the full speed and capabilities of 5G depend on the mid-band spectrum that secures performance in the long term and adds more capacity if required. Here, 6GHz plays a critical role, especially considering the use of mobile technologies has grown exponentially, devices have become more powerful, and services more diverse for both consumers and enterprises. With bandwidth-hungry applications, the number of connected devices per person has also increased, which means more bandwidth will be required to limit service degradation and deliver a good quality of experience.”
Extending the bandwidth of 5G through the harmonisation of the 6GHz spectrum will provide more bandwidth and improve network performance. On top of this, the broad, contiguous channels offered by the 6GHz range will reduce the need for network densification and make next-generation connectivity more affordable for all.
Khalid Murshed, Chief Technology and Information Officer (CTIO), Etisalat UAE, said: “5G allows the industry to support national digital transformation goals by providing reliable, high capacity, low latency, and wide-area connectivity to consumers and industries. The metaverse is opening untapped opportunities with hyper-personalised experiences powered by AI. Telcos will be the entry point to the metaverse because of connectivity but also because the customer wants access to a digital world. The future is powered by AI and analytics, with metaverse playing a role yet to be defined. This kind of technology disruption will create challenges but simultaneously bring massive prospects to this dynamic industry.
The trial for 6GHz was influenced by these future market requirements as we foresee significant growth accelerated by these applications. As a digital telco, we focus on our core while curating digital experiences that maximise engagement by building new capabilities across AI and digital to thrive in an increasingly competitive and ever-changing market environment.”
The focus on 6GHz is also in line with etisalat by e&’s future roadmap as part of the e& group transformation drive to become a global technology conglomerate. As a testament to its continual drive for innovation, it works closely with global tech companies like Meta to develop metaverse technologies, augmented reality and virtual reality experiences, and conversational commerce, which are all integrated with the latest Meta products and solutions.
The metaverse will require seamless mobility enabled by macro-cellular networks relying on a mid-band spectrum such as the 6GHz band.
5G is the enabler of the future digital society and the foundation for the digital economy. According to GSMA’s latest report, 5G will bring an economic contribution of $700bn to society in 2030. At the end of March 2022, 5G services have been launched in more than 70 countries, with more than 220 5G networks being deployed, and more than 700m 5G users.
5G networks and technologies support next-generation industry 4.0 and implementations in health care and transport, all depending on bandwidth, coverage and capacity.
Etisalat by e& has been also working towards meeting the various requirements of IMT (International Mobile Telecommunications) set by ITU (International Telecommunication Union) and the World Radiocommunication Conference to be held in 2023 in UAE. This is in line with various countries undergoing similar trials supporting the spectrum for IMT along with other regulators and operators.