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SK telecom SK Telecom Transplanting ‘AI Network’ into World’s Third Largest Mobile Operator Bharti

09/14/2017



The two companies announced that they signed a strategic partnership contract for transferring AI network technologies and capability in San Francisco, USA, where Mobile World Congress America was being held. CEO Park Jeong-Ho and Chairman Sunil Bharti Mittal attended the signing ceremony.  


Through this partnership, the two companies will construct SK Telecom’s ‘Next Generation AI Network Operation Solution’ at the nationwide network of India by the end of 2019. Also, the two companies agreed to cooperate in evolving Network Functions Virtualization (NFV) technology and expanding 5G/IoT ecosystem.  


Bharti Airtel (hereunder Bharti) based in India is providing mobile telecommunication services to 20 countries. The number of subscribers is the third largest in the world: 280 million in India and 100 million outside of India.   


Bharti’s Chairman Mittal is a founder and chairman, and is leading the innovation of mobile communication industry as a chairman of GSMA since 2017.  


Since 2012, SK Telecom has been providing consulting services on network designing, construction, and operation to 11 mobile operators in nine countries including China and Russia.  


Based on this, the company along with world-famous large mobile operator was able to promote the largest project in history covering from the network consulting to the solution construction.  


SK Telecom has been contributing to evolving Korea’s ICT industry such as smartphone, network equipment, and internet industry by improving Korea’s mobile telecommunication into world’s best level.  


Furthermore, SK Telecom explained that, through this partnership, the company was able to verify the possibility that its network technology can transform into a new global growth business in the era of New ICT.    


‘Heart of Network’ developed by SKT will be provided to 280 million Indian customers 


SK Telecom’s next generation AI network operation solution functions as a ‘Heart of Network’, being operated for 24 hours a day to provide the best quality services such as optimization and transmission of telecommunication traffic and automatic diagnosis of malfunction and its recovery.  


This solution developed by 250 personnel from SK Telecom and SK holdings C&C for two years consists of outstanding technologies: AI’s automatic network optimization, real-time quality prediction through analysis of big data, and perception of symptoms and response to them at the whole level of network.  


Only a few mobile operators in the world has succeeded in constructing an AI based network solution. After applying its AI network into Korea’s mobile telecommunication services in October 2016, SK Telecom is receiving a drastic increased requests for technology transfer and partnership from various mobile operators.


Partnership between SK Telecom and Bharti began at the board of directors’ meeting of GSMA, which was held in Barcelona, Spain in February 2017. CEO Park Jeong-Ho and Chairman Sunil Bharti Mittal discussed the direction of next generation network evolution and service innovation (Digital Transformation) at the meeting.


To embrace drastically increasing data traffic and 280 million subscribers in India, Bharti doubled the number of base stations in the past two years and has accelerated the transition of a network into LTE. 


Through this partnership, Bharti will be able to dramatically improve its network quality competitiveness in the Indian market in which ‘LTE Quality Competitiveness’ is the main topic. At the same time, SK Telecom will be able to increase the solution export to global mobile operators, basing on Bharti.  


SK Telecom and Korean small/medium equipment companies will form an ICT Korean Fleet…Joint marketing in the global marekt 


SK Telecom will commence the project by analyzing local network structure and evaluating necessary resources for improving the network quality after dispatching core personnel of network and solution part before the end of September 2017.   


SK Telecom is planning to execute trial application of the core functions of AI network by the end of 2017 and complete the construction by optimizing the network in accordance with the status of local network by the end of 2019.


For this project, six or seven Korean small/medium equipment companies as well as SK Telecom and SK holdings C&C will join to form an ‘ICT Korean Fleet’.   


By sharing chances to do business in the global market, the company can expand a new ICT ecosystem and enhance the ICT competitiveness of Korea.  


Sunil Bharti Mittal, Chairman of Bharti, said, “Through the partnership with SK Telecom which constructed world’s best mobile network, we will provide customers with a drastically improved experience. I hope that this partnership enables Indian telecommunication infrastructure to be upgraded to the same level of Korea and the telecommunication environment changes dramatically.”


Park Jeong-Ho, CEO of SK Telecom, said, “Partnership between the two companies will be recognized as asuccessful example of cooperation in the New ICT era. I expect that innovation DNA of the two companies would create a synergy effect to provide customers with more upgraded level of services.” 

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