Bangladesh’s state operator to conduct 5G trial next month

Bangladesh’s state-run cellphone operator Teletalk will conduct a test trial for its 5G (fifth-generation)
network in capital Dhaka next month.
“We’re using 5G equipment of Huawei and Nokia to conduct the 5G trial in Dhaka on Dec. 12,” Md Shahab Uddin, managing director of Teletalk Bangladesh Limited, made the announcement Saturday during a workshop for the members of Telecom Reporters’ Network of Bangladesh (TRNB) in Dhaka.
Next year, he said, they will launch commercial trials for its 5G network from at least 200 sites in the capital city and elsewhere in the country initially if everything goes as per plan.
The state-run cellphone operator earlier became the country’s first telecom operator to successfully demonstrate live 3G service over a commercial network.
Bangladesh in October 2012 officially entered 3G era as Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina inaugurated the long-awaited the third generation of wireless communications via the state-run cellphone operator Teletalk.
In February 2018, Bangladesh formally entered 4G era as Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission (BTRC) issued licences to four operators — Grameenphone, Robi, Banglalink and Teletalk– paving the way for launching the fourth generation of mobile telecommunications services.
Experts said the launch of 5G services could further bolster the government’s efforts in minimizing the “digital divide” in Bangladesh, which is poorly served by broadband Internet services.
Chinese telecommunications giant Huawei had already conducted Bangladesh’s first trial of 5G.
Huawei conducted the trial teaming up with the Bangladeshi government’s Posts & Telecommunications Division, the Ministry of Posts, Telecommunications and Information Technology and Robi, a joint venture of Axiata Group Berhad (Malaysia), Bharti Airtel Limited (India) and NTT DoCoMo Inc. (Japan), at a ceremony in capital Dhaka in 2018.
Officials said the purposes of that event was to show how a 5G ecosystem can be cultivated in “Digital Bangladesh” and how to use 5G to respond to the economic transformation of Bangladesh as well as the operators.
This next generation of wireless technology is expected to change the way of everyday life. 5G will play vital role in automatic driving, Artificial Intelligence, Virtual Reality, Big data, Internet of Things, Smart City and network, they said.
Latest BTRC data showed the country’s total number of mobile phone subscribers hit 180.25 million at the end of September this year.
Of the total number of Bangladeshi Internet users, however, the BTRC data showed that there were 118.71 million mobile internet and 10.07 million broadband Internet users in the country. 
Bangladesh has now four mobile companies, three of which are foreign-backed cellphone operators — Grameenphone, Robi and Banglalink.