Spanish telecommunications operator Telefonica and compatriot bank Banco Santander have inked an agreement to launch a joint initiative to apply 5G technology to the banking sector.
The two partners have developed three 5G use cases that customers can already experience at two bank offices in the city of Alcobendas, near Madrid.
The carrier said that this initiative will make it possible to advance in the application of new technologies in the financial sector as well as to develop 5G solutions for the banking sector and support corporate customers in their transformation process.
Telefónica, in collaboration with Chinese vendor ZTE, has deployed a 5G trial network in Alcobendas. This city joins the Telefónica’s 5G Technology Cities initiative that also includes Talavera de la Reina, Segovia, Barcelona and Málaga.
“The initiative with Santander Spain is the result of the collaboration with our corporate customers to ensure that 5G technology is deployed in a way that fully meets their needs, prioritizing the development of the most demanded capacities. With initiatives like this we also ensure the early adoption of 5G and the positive impact on the Spanish industrial network,” said Emilio Gayo, CEO of Telefónica Spain.
Rami Aboukhair, CEO of Santander Spain, said that the agreement with Telefónica “responds to Santander’s commitment to innovation and to accompanying our customers in the transformation process towards the new generation of 5G communications. The new technology will allow us to have a better connectivity and faster speed of response in transactions and to offer all our customers the best experience and the best possible solutions.”
The project is comprised of three use cases:
-4K videoconference between two bank offices that offers, through the 5G network, an ultra-high resolution image and natural motion due to a frame rate of 30 frames per second with zero delay.
-5G storage, a low-latency cloud storage solution provided by Telefónica and based on the Hitachi Content Platform Anywhere Edge solution embedded on Telefónica’s edge computing infrastructure.
-A “virtual visit” to co-working spaces developed in collaboration with Idronia that use virtual reality, 360-degree video and edge computing technologies.
The 5G network provided by ZTE includes the radio, the core network and the terminals. The technology employed is based on the Standalone mode, creating an end-to-end 5G network architecture that does not require LTE support. The 5G base stations connect to the core network using Telefónica’s transport network.
The technology will allow reliance on a low-latency cloud to deploy critical services in offices without the need to change existing equipment, or having a global 5G backup system that preserves the same features and services that are available with the fixed network.
Last month, the Spanish government approved a 5G trial to be carried out by Telefonica in the Galicia region. These trials will be carried out in cooperation with European vendors Nokia, Ericsson and Spain-based Telnet.
These 5G trials will required a total budget of $12 million and are expected to last more than two years.
Telefonica’s 5G trial will mainly focus on use cases including drones, connected cars, fixed wireless access (FWA) and health.
In January 2018, Telefonica partnered with Nokia and Ericsson for the initial deployment of 5G capabilities in the cities of Segovia and Talavera de la Reina. Nokia was in charge of deploying 5G infrastructure in Segovia, while Ericsson focused on network deployments in Talavera de la Reina.
The Spanish operator said these two initial deployments would allow it to adapt its systems for the future rollout of 5G systems across the rest of the country. The telco also said at the time that 5G use cases would be developed with concept tests on the new services, products, experiences and business models.
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