VodafoneZiggo, the leading Dutch communications service provider, announced on 28 April 2020 that it is launching 5G with Ericsson Spectrum Sharing and Ericsson 5G Core, for an economic and seamless roll-out of the latest mobile technology offering enhanced network performance.
Part of their GigaNet strategy, VodafoneZiggo is switching on their 5G network using the Ericsson Spectrum Sharing solution enabling their subscribers to benefit from improved user experience.
Jeroen Hoencamp, CEO of VodafoneZiggo, says: “5G is an evolution that opens doors to new possibilities. Today we are introducing 5G via ‘Ericsson Spectrum Sharing’ in our GigaNet. We are making use of the latest innovative technology to apply 5G in existing frequency bands, using our existing antennas. With the addition of 5G, we want to offer the Netherlands the best fixed and mobile digital infrastructure in the world which will result in a new form of connectedness. Keeping our customers connected is at the core of what we do, and we know this partnership with Ericsson will ensure that we do just that”.
Arun Bansal, President Europe and Latin America, says: “This is another great example of our strong partnership with VodafoneZiggo. Launching 5G in the most economical way by jointly deploying an end-to-end 5G solution using Ericsson Spectrum Sharing, as well as leveraging their existing Ericsson Evolved Packet Core in a Non-Standalone configuration. Truly, it’s in times of crisis that we realize just how vital our communications networks are. Investing in 5G opens so many opportunities for us all, from remote medical care to automating resilient utilities services. Working together, we can keep more people connected, and safe.”
A unique spectrum environment
The spectrum situation in the Netherlands is different compared to other European countries. In June of 2020, the 700MHz frequency will be auctioned, but the 3.5GHz band, which is currently being used by the country’s defense satellite system, will not be available by auction until 2022. By deploying Ericsson Spectrum Sharing already now, VodafoneZiggo can quickly introduce 5G over a wide area, using existing frequency bands and existing Ericsson Radio System equipment.
The Ericsson Spectrum Sharing software, which is commercially available, can run on any of the five million 5G-ready radios Ericsson has delivered since 2015.
The launch of 5G is a continuation of a long-standing partnership in which Ericsson delivers the majority of the mobile network technology and managed services to VodafoneZiggo. In January 2020, the partners launched a 5G co-creation environment, the 5G HUB, offering companies, startups and students the chance to explore 5G in practice.
Previously, the partners also achieved the commercial launch of the country’s first end-to-end cloud based VoLTE network, and in February 2020, a 3G switch off was realized enabling VodafoneZiggo to leverage the 2100 MHz band and provide increased capabilities to end users.