Cambodia’s Smart Axiata said it started 5G trials in partnership with China’s Huawei Technologies on Monday and could start rolling out the mobile network by this year.
Smart Axiata, part of Malaysia’s Axiata Group, serves half of the 16 million population of the Southeast Asian nation.
“It will not be a nationwide coverage from day one, it will be hot spot first, it will be an urban areas first and then we will gradually expand,” Smart Axiata’s chief executive Thomas Hundt told reporters after the trial.
Thomas Hundt said Smart Axiata will probably invest hundreds of millions of dollars over the next few years in 5G mobile networks and it will need the government’s approval before launching commercially.
“I very much hope that this year in 2019, we can bring 5G to commercial operation but … it’s not entirely on us, we are ready, we could start in a couple of weeks from a technique standpoint, no problem but we need obviously a license from the head of the government,” Thomas Hundt said.
Huawei’s Chief Technology Officer Aaron Wang said the Chinese company had 50 5G commercial contracts and shipped 150,000 base stations worldwide.
Huawei in Poland
Huawei aims to spend 3 billion zlotys or $793 million in Poland in the next five years. Its investment will depend on its role in the 5G rollout.
The United States has raised concerns about the security of Huawei technology and encouraged allies not to use it. Huawei says its technology does not pose a security risk to users.
Polish officials said in January the government was prepared to exclude Huawei from 5G networks after the arrest of a Chinese Huawei employee and a former Polish security official on spying allegations.
The company had previously said it was planning to invest 2 billion zlotys in the next three years.