SoftBank launches private 5G service for enterprises

SoftBank will also open a technology verification area at SoftBank Robotics Logistics Innovation Lab in Ichikawa City

Japanese operator SoftBank has launched a private 5G service that enables enterprises, local governments and other organizations to build customized 5G networks on their premises with dedicated base stations.

With the private 5G service, SoftBank installs network equipment at a client’s site and combines it with its own allocated spectrum to build a dedicated and closed network. The new offering will enable enterprise customers to build private 5G network environments outside the conventional public 5G service areas provided by telecommunications operators, SoftBank said.

The private 5G service launch follows SoftBank’s introduction of its shared type service first launched in March 2023.

The Japanese operator noted that the shared type service utilizes network slicing technology which uses sections of SoftBank’s public 5G network for specific customer uses. With the recently launched dedicated type service, SoftBank installs equipment and base stations directly at the customer’s premises.

“With this closed 5G network, latency is about a fifth compared to the shared type service, which relays traffic back to public 5G core network equipment, and security is enhanced since data is processed onsite. The private 5G service is optimal for clients that require advanced network solutions and low latency, making it suitable for those operating smart factories,” SoftBank said.

With the launch of this new 5G offering, SoftBank will open a technology verification area at SoftBank Robotics Logistics Innovation Lab in Ichikawa City, Chiba Prefecture. This lab uses logistics solutions such as the high-density automated “AutoStore” warehouse system and automated guided vehicles (AGVs).

“The technology verification area will closely resemble actual environments found in logistics warehouses and factories. In addition to being a facility to conduct private 5G technology tests, customers will also be able to consult SoftBank about the introduction and utilization of private 5G networks at the technology verification area,” the company said.

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