DNB, TM and ZTE announce mmWave 5G SA trial in Malaysia

Malaysian state-run 5G network operator Digital Nasional Berhad () has signed a partnership with local carrier Telekom (TM) and Chinese vendor Corporation to carry out a 5G live which will deliver speeds up to 28 Gbps.

In a release, ZTE said that the partnership will leverage TM's established network infrastructure and digital expertise as well as ZTE's mmWave active antenna unit to deliver Malaysia's first standalone 5G core, complemented by an adaptable next generation transport network.

ZTE also noted that the partnership will also enhance rapid Fixed Wireless Access (FWA) connections to deliver high-quality services, video streaming, lag-free online gaming and immersive virtual and augmented reality applications.

Ken Tan Tzi Kieng, CTO of DNB, said: “We are thrilled to be part of this strategic collaboration with TM, MMU and ZTE on the world's fastest 5G live trial. Connectivity is a vital component of the digital economy, and 5G, with its high throughput and low latency, paves the way for Malaysia to achieve its digital aspirations. The use of mmWave spectrum in DNB's 5G wholesale network further augments this by giving a 5.5G experience, which is a launchpad to 6G. The combination of our spectrum with TM's SA core opens up exciting possibilities in the enterprise space, especially in the deployment of 5G private networks.”

Meanwhile, Amar Huzaimi Md Deris, TM's CEO, said that the standalone 5G core and TM's network infrastructure will establish new benchmarks in connectivity speed and reliability, which will enable better user experiences.

In May, Telekom Malaysia had announced its withdrawal from a deal to acquire a stake in Malaysia's 5G network Digital Nasional Berhad, following the announcement by the Malaysian government that it will permit the rollout of a second 5G network in the country from next year.

The telco said its customers will continue to enjoy 5G services and solutions, as the 5G wholesale access agreement with DNB remained in place.

DNB was set up by the Malaysian government in 2021 as a special purpose vehicle to develop the country's 5G network infrastructure, which private telecommunications firms would use to offer 5G services to their customers.

Malaysia's Communications and Digital Minister Fahmi Fadzil previously said that DNB will continue to roll out 5G network infrastructure in the country until 80% coverage is achieved by the end of this year. The Malaysian government also confirmed that DNB will be taken over by a private entity once it achieves its 5G population coverage target.

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