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STC Kuwait launches commercial 5G standalone infrastructure; boosts 2100MHz 5G coverage

7 May 2021

STC Kuwait has announced the commercial implementation of 5G standalone (SA) technology on its network, which it noted will enable higher uplink bandwidth especially catering to specialised use scenarios such as enterprise applications where uplink throughput is equally important as downlink, while reducing user traffic latency to address key issues related to interruptions in online gaming experience, and kicking off market interest in new rich forms of gaming technology like VR. 5G SA will also feature higher levels of security to provide robustness to telecom networks, STC added.

The cellco’s statement continued: ‘Further empowering Multi-Access Edge Computing (MEC) deployment, 5G SA will enable STC to become not only Cloud Native, but Edge Native as well. This transition will allow service aggregation near subscriber premises. From massive data processing in enterprise campus scenarios, real-time data processing in industrial control, and autonomous driving, to massive IoT use cases requiring analytics localisation and better user experience for AR/VR/cloud. 5G SA enables different verticals to gain advantage from STC’s infrastructure by creating end-to-end isolated logical networks that share resources in a secured, isolated, and efficient way, also known as Network Slicing. This allows public and private corporations to increase their levels of efficiency and increase revenue when building their private networks, without the hassle of investing in new infrastructure, acquiring new spectrums, developing coverage, and getting capital assets. STC will also be able to offer diversified digital services to verticals, such as guaranteed voice-over-5G applications (VoNR), dedicated data access, dedicated internet access, as well as on-demand services such as cloud CCTV capabilities to empower enhanced smart city services to citizens, and assist businesses in innovating and generating new revenue streams in untapped markets.’

STC Kuwait also announced that it is focusing on expanding 2100MHz 5G network coverage. Having launched its 5G network using the 3.5GHz frequency band in mid-2019 and expanding coverage to all populated areas, the operator began introducing 2100MHz 5G services in Q3 2020 with an initial emphasis on indoor locations. Currently, it says that 2100MHz 5G NR sites have been strategically installed in ‘dense districts’ across the country, while it plans to deploy more sites throughout 2021, adding that the new deployment will support ‘enhanced Quality of Experience (QoE) for multiple 5G use cases, such as HD voice, 4K video streaming, online gaming, telemedicine and collaborative applications.’ STC notes that 2100MHz 5G NR is supported on smartphones and other devices from Apple, Samsung and Huawei, and will enable smoother access to 5G Carrier Aggregation (CA) services and mass IoT deployment.

Kuwait, STC Kuwait

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