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(News Focus) (MWC 19) Samsung ups 5G ante at MWC amid Huawei row

Consumer Electronics 15:37 February 24, 2019

By Kim Eun-jung

BARCELONA, Feb. 24 (Yonhap) -- Samsung Electronics Co. said Sunday it will showcase a diverse array of its 5G solutions ranging from chipsets and gear to smartphones and live-streaming capabilities when business representatives gather in Barcelona for the world's largest mobile show.

The South Korean tech giant said it is prepared to introduce its end-to-end solutions for the next-generation cellular technology during MWC 2019, formerly the Mobile World Congress, which runs from Monday to Thursday.

The global market leader in smartphones and memory chips has been stepping up promotions of its 5G technology, gear and devices as it strives for a bigger slice of the market in the coming era of 5G.

With the slowing memory market after a two-year super cycle and flattening demand for new smartphones, Samsung said it will seek new business opportunities with carriers and tech suppliers during this year's congress.

"We at Samsung have combined our expertise in being one of the early innovators in 5G commercial services -- above and below 6 GHz bands to date and this groundbreaking leadership led us to achieve over 36,000 5G base station shipments as of February 2019," Paul Kyungwhoon Cheun, head of Samsung's networks business, said in a release.

Models present the Galaxy S10 5G at Samsung Electronics Co.'s booth at MWC 2019 Barcelona on Feb. 24, 2019, ahead of the opening of the world's largest mobile show in this photo provided by the South Korean tech giant. (Yonhap)

"Being the only company in the world to deploy and provide 5G end-to-end solutions in the U.S. and Korea, we will continue to advance our innovative endeavors and push the boundaries in 5G technology."

Samsung's bid to highlight its 5G solutions comes as Huawei, the world's largest telecom equipment maker, faces growing pressure from the United States amid a trade war. The Donald Trump administration has accused the Chinese firm of being a security threat and encouraged mobile operators in the U.S., Europe and other countries to break off relations with Huawei.

Samsung, which is considered a relatively minor alternative 5G supplier compared with European companies like Ericsson and Nokia for now, said it will leverage its commercially proven 5G leadership to expand its foothold in emerging markets.

Samsung currently has a mere 3 percent share in the 5G equipment sector, lagging far behind Huawei's 28 percent and Ericsson's 27 percent, according to market researcher IHS Markit. The company earlier set a goal of capturing a 20 percent share in the 5G equipment market by 2022.

During MWC, Samsung said it will team up with American IT company Cisco and Orange Spain, a mobile operator in Spain, to demonstrate 5G-powered use cases in various industries.

For enterprise clients, the company will demonstrate artificial intelligence-based 5G network management solutions with Zhilabs, acquired by Samsung through acquisition in October.

Samsung also presents a portfolio of chips, including the Exynos Modem 5100 compliant with 5G New Radio standard for faster data speeds up to 6 gigabytes per second.

Besides such devices, Samsung will show its new 5G Radio Frequency (RF) chipsets that support 28 GHz and 39 GHz. Using these new RF chipsets, 5G base stations will be approximately 25 percent smaller, lighter and less power consuming compared with previous iterations, it said.

Also on display at Samsung's booth will be its latest Galaxy S10 lineup with 5G models and its first foldable phone, which wowed the world during a closely watched launching event in San Francisco on Wednesday.

With 5G connectivity, the Galaxy S10 5G can access network speeds up to roughly 20 times faster than 4G networks, supporting hyper-fast streaming, 4K video calls and next-level mobile gaming, the handset maker said.

Galaxy S10 5G will be released in South Korea next month in time for the commercial rollout of 5G service in Asia's leading tech hub.

The company will also launch a foldable phone with 5G connection in its home turf in May, the world's first phone with a flexible screen and six cameras.

A mobile edge cloud game on the company's first 5G smartphone will be demonstrated live, by being connected to Samsung's live 5G network solutions.

"For more than 35 years, we've led the industry in new hardware and services that have helped to revolutionize the consumer experience," said DJ Koh, head of Samsung's IT & mobile communications division.

"At MWC this year, we're showcasing the remarkable breadth of our expanding connected ecosystem, from game-changing 5G end-to-end solutions to outstanding new additions to the Galaxy family, such as the Galaxy Fold and the Galaxy S10 5G."

Over the four-day trade show, the company will live broadcast the MWC's official media channel using its 5G network throughout the venue and to 280 hotels in Barcelona.


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