Samsung has announced that it will conduct 4G and 5G trials with Virgin Media O2. Through the trials, the companies will verify the capability and performance of Samsung’s 4G and 5G network solutions in Virgin Media O2’s commercial network, in the UK. The trial will also assess the interoperability between Samsung’s latest solutions and Virgin Media O2’s 2G and 3G legacy networks.
“With this trial, we are excited to join hands with Virgin Media O2 to demonstrate the readiness of our 5G network solutions for deployment in the U.K. and our capabilities in bringing immersive and reliable 4G and 5G mobile experiences to users,” said Woojune Kim, Executive Vice President, Head of Global Sales & Marketing, Networks Business at Samsung Electronics. “At Samsung, we are continuously enhancing mobile experiences through powerful network solutions that advance and drive 5G to new levels,” he continued.
Enhanced 5G end-user experiences
Samsung will provide its advanced solutions for the trial, which include its baseband unit and 5G Massive MIMO radios. Samsung 4G radios will also be used, on both low-band and mid-band spectrums, while being Open RAN compliant with some configuration changes and additional support in the future.
The latest baseband unit from Samsung offers improved performance with industry leading capacity and throughput, while supporting both 4G and 5G technology in a single unit. Moreover, the company’s 5G Massive MIMO radios have a slim and lightweight design, which ensure easy and quick installation for operators, as well as increased coverage and data speeds for driving enhanced 5G end-user experiences.
“Vendor diversity is crucial to developing safe, secure, and more efficient networks,” said Jeanie York, Chief Technology Officer at Virgin Media O2. “We look forward to undertaking these initial trials with Samsung, which is another milestone in our continued journey to provide the best possible 5G experience for our customers, as well as boosting our 4G network, as we look to upgrade the U.K,” she continued.
Julia Lopez, Minister for Media, Data, and Digital Infrastructure, said: “We’re investing £250 million to put the UK at the forefront of 5G innovation so more people and businesses can benefit from improved and secure connectivity. It is fantastic to see industry supporting this push with Virgin Media O2 and Samsung working together to increase competition, resilience and choice in the 5G supply market.”
Virgin Media O2 has 47 million connections across broadband, mobile, TV and home phone, and offers connectivity services, applications and digital solutions to tens of thousands of UK businesses and public sector organisations. Samsung Networks has pioneered the successful delivery of 5G end-to-end solutions including chipsets, radios, and core and has a 5G product portfolio from fully virtualised RAN and Core to private network solutions and AI-powered automation tools. Samsung currently provides network solutions to mobile operators that deliver connectivity to hundreds of millions of users around the world, making this trial partnership very promising indeed.