Etisalat plans 5G trials next year, commercial launch in 2019

24 Mar 2017

United Arab Emirates (UAE) telco Etisalat says it plans to begin testing 5G technology next year and hopes to launch commercially in 2019. A report from Gulf News quotes Etisalat’s CTO, Hatem Bamatraf, as saying: ‘We are trying to push the entire industry to be ready for 2019 and have signed a deal with Qualcomm. We are in talks with device manufacturers, vendors, applications providers and regulators.’ He added: ‘We expect mass adoption to start from 2020. What 5G is going to bring in is new revenue streams for telecom operators. 5G is going to connect things rather than people, so there are huge growth opportunities.’ Bamatraf said that investment, spectrum availability and readiness of the ecosystem will be the key challenges for telecom operators when adopting 5G.

United Arab Emirates, Etisalat UAE