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Nokia to be 5G-ready by 2017, says CEO

Posted: 23 Feb 2016 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:IoT? 5G?

Following its acquisition of Alcatel-Lucent, communications and IT company Nokia has announced that it would take the lead in developing and investing in the next-generation 5G technology and Internet of Things (IoT). Nokia aims to be at the forefront of making 5G a reality to manifest their vision of massive capacity and massive connectivity.

"We are planning to dramatically increase our investment in 5G this year and unleash the power of our massive innovation engine," Nokia President and CEO Rajeev Suri told a media and analyst briefing at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain.

Suri announced a new 5G-ready AirScale radio access product to replace the very popular Flexi base station; Nokia's acquisition of Nakina, a Canadian software company that specialises in preventing, identifying and eliminating security threats; and the company's launch of a $350 million IoT investment fund through Nokia's private venture firm, Nokia Growth Partners.

"5G must happen fast because important IoT use cases demand it. If we know that 5G can help save lives, improve our environment, and make our lives better, we need to move faster, not slower," Suri said.

Alcatel-Lucent integration

"Progress with integrating Alcatel-Lucent is going smoothly and effectively, avoiding the organisational angst and infighting that have characterized earlier deals," Suri said.

He added that the combined company is targeting many different cross-selling opportunities and making joint bids to customers around the world. These opportunities are all part of the critical scope that Alcatel-Lucent has given Nokia, Suri said, in addition to greater innovation heft, scale and customer reach.

Nokia and Alcatel-Lucent had combined net sales at the end of 2015 of EUR 26.6 billion, combined R&D spend of EUR 4.5 billion in 2015 with over 40,000 researchers and scientists, and combined net cash of EUR 10 billion. The official "day one" for joint Nokia and Alcatel-Lucent operations was on January 14, 2016.

5G and IoT-ready

Nokia's new 5G-ready AirScale product supports any technology, from 2G through LTE Advance Pro and 5G when it arrives. It also includes a new base station with future-ready base band and next generation RF elements that will give customers a connectivity experience that exceeds all others. AirScale also uses 60% less energy than the Flexi.

The new IoT fund will invest in promising companies primarily around the connected enterprise, consumer IoT, connected Car, digital health as well as technologies with a focus on capabilities in big data and analytics. The fund will support Nokia in defining future business opportunities and the technical underpinnings for the rapidly growing IoT market.

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