SEOUL, Oct. 4 (Korea Bizwire) — SK Telecom Co. will supply its fifth-generation (5G) network solutions to Japanese e-commerce giant Rakuten Inc., industry sources said Friday, as South Korea’s top mobile carrier expands its presence in the sector.
SK Telecom will export its 5G network designs, optimized communication quality solutions for 5G, 5G antennas, and radio frequency transmission technologies, according to the sources.
SK Telecom did not reveal the value of the deal, but industry insiders speculate Rakuten will invest more than 2.1 trillion won (US$1.75 billion) in 5G infrastructure in the future.
It is the first time that a South Korean mobile carrier exports its 5G-related technology to a foreign rival.
Rakuten earlier obtained the license to become Japan’s fourth mobile carrier. The company launched a new subsidiary, Rakuten Mobile, to roll out 5G services in June 2020.
The deal comes after the South Korea’s top tech firm, Samsung Electronics Co., was tapped to supply 5G network equipment to major Japanese telecom firm KDDI Corp.
Along with Finland’s Nokia Corp. and Sweden’s Ericsson, Samsung has been selected by KDDI as one of the main 5G vendors for next-generation network deployment in Japan, according to the sources.