Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Italy's TIM Eyes 5G Rollout in Turin

TIM (Telecom Italia Mobile) has announced that Turin will become the first Italian city and amongst the first in Europe to have a new 5G mobile network, following the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between TIM and the municipality of Turin.

TIM stated that by 2018 Turin, where its innovation and development centre is based, will be the site of its first 5G technology trial in a metropolitan area, designed to support the development of a new generation mobile network. The Turin 5G project will include the gradual extension of the new mobile broadband infrastructure to the municipal urban area, with the objective of covering the entire city by 2020.

Through the new MoU, TIM plans to install starting in 2017 more than 100 small cells in key areas of the city, including Via Roma, Via Po, Via Garibaldi, Via Lagrange and Piazza Vittorio, in the Quadrilatero Romano, and in the areas where the Polytechnic University and University of Turin are located. The new small cells will be in addition to the 200 mobile ultra-broadband sites that TIM will use to enhance radio coverage in the city, and the new network will be supported by its fibre infrastructure that already covers most of the city.

As part of this initiative, Turin has been nominated by TIM as the Italian 5G city to serve as the preferred location for activities envisaged in the 5G Action Plan of the European Commission, which aims to speed up development through launching trials and subsequently public use of the new technology, commencing with the main metropolitan areas. As such, Turin is expected to form part of the first pan-European network of 5G interconnected cities.

The planned trial in Turin will involve up to 3,000 users, who will be able to utilise the high performances and transmission speeds, as well as new experimental services and applications, provided by the city administration over TIM's 5G network. Specifically, TIM will provide the city of Turin with new smart city services in the areas of public security, transport management and information services.

Earlier in March, TIM and Ericsson announced they would strengthen their cooperation relating to the development of 5G technology via a MoU designed to accelerate the evolution towards 5G. The agreement will focus on the design and testing of access infrastructure, antenna systems and network virtualisation, in particular through joint participation in Italian and European research projects and integration of service platforms for testing in the field. The agreement is part of the 5G for Italy initiative launched by TIM and Ericsson last year.

Regarding the initiative, Giuseppe Recchi, executive chairman of TIM, said, "(TIM's) business plan includes Euro 11 billion of investments in 3 years, Euro 5 billion of which will be dedicated to developing the new ultra-broadband networks… (to support) future fast connections and the development of cities".

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