Ciena ventures further into Vietnam’s 5G rollout

August 04, 2021 | 15:41
Vietnam’s upcoming 5G rollout is attracting much interest among domestic and international enterprises, with expansions to intensify in the months to come. Duong Xuan Truong, country manager of Ciena Vietnam, discussed with VIR’s Bich Thuy about the key trends and future plans ahead.

Vietnam is accelerating trials so as to soon commercialise 5G. What are the main factors for the country in accelerating on this path?

Duong Xuan Truong, country manager of Ciena Vietnam
Duong Xuan Truong, country manager of Ciena Vietnam

Studies have found that organisations across a range of sectors believe 5G will represent an opportunity to reinvent their processes over the next five years. Access to 5G networks will be critical for organisations to leverage the potential of industrial disruptive technologies such as AI and the Internet of Things to solidify their market leadership.

In Vietnam, 5G enables significantly faster data rates, much lower latency, guaranteed end-to-end network performance, and support for billions of ‘things’ such as sensors. This leads to new revenue-generating opportunities.

Vietnam is well on the path towards rolling out 5G services. Vietnam has begun to award test licenses to the nation’s mobile operators, and we expect 5G to boom in the coming years. Ciena helps key operators in Vietnam roll this out. With 5G having already moved from concept to some commercial reality in Vietnam, a realm of never-before-seen possibilities will soon open up.

We are talking about an entirely new generation of applications and use-cases emerging in smart cities, smart government, banking, retail, manufacturing, gaming, and automotives that will transform the way we work, live, and play.

To accelerate the commercialisation of 5G in Vietnam, it is important to consider network infrastructure needs that support the widespread use of 5G. Compared to 4G LTE, 5G is expected to offer faster speeds for more devices, with lower latency and higher data volumes across various channels and applications.

The network needs to be able to support surges in traffic, anticipate and counteract network congestion, and adapt to meet the performance and speed required by new applications and services. The network needs to be faster, closer, and smarter.

The success of 5G depends heavily on the availability of wireline fiber. As we expand our wireless networks and data requirements on mobile networks continue to grow, we become more fixed-line dependent with more and denser cell site grids that are connected by fiber and Ethernet.

Beyond hardware, it is also crucial to have support from the Vietnamese government, service providers, businesses, and people. Only through collaboration between all key stakeholders can the commercialisation of 5G take off smoothly with solid groundwork and high adoption rates. Vietnam can look into strategies that have been adopted in other countries, such as nurturing a 5G environment beyond infrastructure by developing talent, solutions, and services to drive 5G growth.

What lessons should Vietnam learn from other countries to accelerate the 5G rollout, and to attract more businesses to join?

5G can be a challenge for any country to roll out. A number of countries in Asia-Pacific, however, have some of the most advanced 5G technology in the world, as a result of strong pre-existing network infrastructure. For example, South Korea and Australia had largely supported the country’s venture into 5G. The two countries already had over 90 per cent 4G coverage.

However, it is also advisable to consider flexible network architectures that support the Non-Standalone model. Such architectures simplify 5G deployment by coupling it to existing 4G networks. Carriers in Vietnam are deploying 5G technology like radios and intellectual property equipment that are made locally. It is important for carriers to pick the best-of-breed solutions that solve their business challenges.

Financial support from the government can also play an important role in accelerating 5G networks and trials for industrial applications. As work continues on network expansion and upgrading, having a comprehensive nationwide 5G roadmap can speed up the process for operators.

With expertise in digital transformation, how can Ciena join the commercial launch of 5G in Vietnam as well as the digital transformation journey in this country?

We believe in a target network end-state for our customers in Vietnam – a network that grows smarter, more agile, and more responsive every day. We call it the Adaptive Network, and it enables customers to optimise their existing frameworks while incorporating new technologies and ways of working.

With Ciena’s combination of hardware, software, and services, we can help transform the networks of Vietnam to be future-ready.

Ciena’s approach can also help Vietnam expand on autonomous networking concepts to transform the static network into a dynamic, programmable environment driven by analytics and intelligence.

By Bich Thuy

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