Home Business Telecommunications Ericsson increases US market investment in 5G
Ericsson increases US market investment in 5G Image courtesy of Stuart Miles at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Global telecommunications giant Ericsson is increasing its investment in the US to support the accelerated build out of its 5G services in the North American market.

According to Ericsson the series of planned “strategic initiatives” will allow it to operate even closer to its customers, meeting the growing demand for 5G globally and in the region.

The investments will fall into two categories –  increasing research and development work done close to customers in the US and increasing flexibility to shorten the timeline for new product introduction and product delivery to customers.

According to Ericsson the investments will enable the company to recruit new expertise from the US, complementing its existing highly-skilled employees in the region.

Börje Ekholm, president and chief executive of Ericsson, says: “The US is our largest market, accounting for a quarter of Ericsson’s business over the last seven years.

“To serve the demand of these fast-moving service providers, we are strengthening our investment in the US to be even closer to our customers and meet their accelerated 5G deployment plans.”

Ericsson has predicted that 5G subscriptions would reach the 150-million mark, accounting for 48% of all mobile subscriptions in North America by the end of 2023.

The company has announced it will also open a new software development centre with baseband focus in 2018, employing more than 200 software engineers once fully operational.

The company says the facility and its employees will further strengthen its 5G software development. 

Baseband is also the interface between the core network and radio units, processing and forwarding voice calls and internet data to end users.

Beginning in 2019, Ericsson says both of these facilities will introduce 5G products and software features into the company’s portfolio, and will be available for customers globally, including in the US.

In addition Ericsson says it will increase its investment in artificial intelligence and automation, employing around 100 specialists in North America by the end of 2018.

“This team will work on utilising AI technologies to accelerate automation, examine product road maps and explore new business opportunities. They will focus on boosting the company’s current portfolio, strengthening customer engagements and promote innovation of new disruptive business opportunities,” Ericsson says in a statement.

To increase flexibility in bringing new products into the market, Ericsson announced it would recruit a dedicated team to work specifically on introducing products for the US market, conducting production engineering, testing/integration and supply preparations on early prototypes.

This will be done in close collaboration with US-based R&D resources and Ericsson says to make 5G products available to customers as fast as possible, it will also begin manufacturing in the US in the fourth quarter of 2018.

Just last month Ericsson, Telstra and Intel announced they had "successfully completed the first end-to-end 5G non-standalone (NSA) 3GPP data call on a commercial mobile network at Telstra’s 5G Innovation Centre on the Gold Coast here in Australia in a “multivendor setup".

As reported by iTWire’s Alex Zaharov-Reutt: The first "end-to-end multi-vendor non-standalone (NSA) 3GPP 5G commercial network data call over licensed 3.5GHz spectrum" has been made at Telstra 5G Innovation Centre on Australia's Gold Coast, and billed as the first "true" 5G call in a real world environment.


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Peter Dinham

Peter Dinham is a co-founder of iTWire and a 35-year veteran journalist and corporate communications consultant. He has worked as a journalist in all forms of media – newspapers/magazines, radio, television, press agency and now, online – including with the Canberra Times, The Examiner (Tasmania), the ABC and AAP-Reuters. As a freelance journalist he also had articles published in Australian and overseas magazines. He worked in the corporate communications/public relations sector, in-house with an airline, and as a senior executive in Australia of the world’s largest communications consultancy, Burson-Marsteller. He also ran his own communications consultancy and was a co-founder in Australia of the global photographic agency, the Image Bank (now Getty Images).


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