In France, Huawei will initially trial 5G technology in the city of Bordeaux

BARCELONA–Huawei signed a new agreement with U.K. telecom group BT and French telecommunications firm Bouygues Telecom which will mainly focus on 5G developments.

The new agreement were announced during the Mobile World Congress, which took place in Barcelona, Spain, this week.

The Chinese vendor and BT Group had inked a new deal to extend their strategic partnership, which will focus on 5G trials.

The partnership involves development and live trials of 5G New Radio (NR), core network technology, and 5G customer premises equipment (CPEs). The aim is to test real-life 5G performance in a range of environments in preparation for commercial launch, the two companies said.

“Our 5G research has been hugely promising, and this partnership with Huawei will turn that research into reality. The EE network is already the UK leader for speed and coverage, and with the weight of BT’s R&D and partnerships we can ensure that leadership continues with the introduction a world class 5G experience,” said Howard Watson, CTIO of BT Group.

“BT is one of Huawei’s most important global customers. Signing this new agreement is recognition of our leading position in the 5G field. We are confident that this further deepening of our partnership will show that our end-to-end 5G solution – from network to device – leads the industry,” said Yang Chaobin, president of Huawei 5G Product Line.

BT and Huawei started joint work on 5G research and development in 2016. In November 2017, they announced the completion of the UK’s first 5G end-to-end lab testing, reaching 2.8Gbps downlink throughput and sub-5ms latency.

Additionally, BT and Huawei showcased the first 5G UL/DL decoupling proof-of-concept live in London at Huawei’s Global Broadband Forum. This technology improves C-band coverage and implements co-site deployment of C-band and 1.8 GHz band. Huawei said that this technology solves the issue of limited uplink coverage on higher frequency bands during the initial deployment of 5G networks, and reduces operators’ requirements for new sites during 5G network construction.

Meanwhile, Huawei and French telecommunications firm Bouygues Telecom have announced a partnership to trial 5G technologies in France.

The partners said that Bordeaux will be the first city for a 5G network trial, from single site to multi-site coverage.

“Bouygues Telecom aims to provide ultimate customer experience. It is our mission to quickly and smoothly evaluate 5G technologies,” said Jean-Paul Arzel, VP Networks for Bouygues Telecom.

“This first 5G trial in Bordeaux marks a key milestone for the expansion of 5G network in France that will support business growth by opening new opportunities,” said Yang Chaobin, president of Huawei 5G Product Line.

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