dtac and PTT team up for first 5G mmWave use case in Thailand

  • 5G use case on PTT’s video surveillance cameras taps into dtac’s 26 GHz spectrum band
  • Both partners ready to move forward on the next phase of 5G development in EECi

October 22, 2020 – Mobile operator dtac has teamed up with the national energy conglomerate PTT Plc to pilot 5G use cases on 26 GHz spectrum in Wangchan Valley, Rayong, the first real-life use case for mmWave 5G. Under a “smart city” concept, the project will start with remotely operated video surveillance cameras, ensuring constant monitoring of physical distancing measures. The project underscores PTT’s ambition for 5G networks to transform Wangchan Valley into a base for research, development and innovation in Thailand. dtac’s involvement comes as part of a wider strategy to develop sustainable 5G use cases that can benefit Thai society.

5G-enabled smart video surveillance for PTT’s EECi

PTT’s collaboration with dtac brings the first use case of 5G IoT services in the EECi. The trial of surveillance cameras will be running on 5G networks on 26 GHz spectrum as it enables high-resolution video feeds for analysis, situational awareness and improved decision making from anywhere in the world. This reinforces the new way of working in the new normal era and the role of IoT for the EECi and PTT, particularly when physical distancing is still a requirement. In addition, PTT will continue to explore 5G IoT services for smart parking with dtac, as a path to developing smart city infrastructure in Thailand.

Mr. Sharad Mehrotra, Chief Executive Officer at Total Access Communications Plc or dtac, said: “Sustainable 5G development in Thailand requires three key factors: use-cases, a supportive device ecosystem and collaboration among all stakeholders. This will lead to 5G adoption across the nation.”

Mr. Prathet Tankuranun, Chief Technology Officer at dtac, added, “The 26 GHz spectrum band is viewed as a pioneer band for 5G B2B services. It offers very large capacity and near-instant responsiveness, making it ideal for remote health, critical machine operations and high-density, high-definition video surveillance.”

Mr. Auttapol Rerkpiboon, President and Chief Executive Officer at PTT Plc, said, “PTT, as developer of 3,500 rai in Wangchan Valley, wishes to make the area into the Eastern Economic Corridor of Innovation, or EECi. We are nurturing an R&D and innovation ecosystem to advance the country under the concept “Powering Thailand’s Transformation”, in a bid to raise competitiveness and keep up with digital disruption and raise life quality standards of Thais. Hence, PTT has joined forces with government agencies and private companies, which includes dtac, to leverage the use of 5G technology in advancing businesses and innovation.”

Mr. Wittawat Svasti-xuto, Chief Technology and Engineering Officer at PTT Plc, added, “PTT’s 5GxUAV sandbox project has been launched earlier in EECi as a platform for 5G-enabled innovation trials. Currently, many use-cases including unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) have been tested by PTT and its allies. The move reinforces our commitment in co-building digital infrastructure and technology under 5GxUAV sandbox project.”

Millimeter wave (mmWave) 5G is superior to 4G in three aspects:

  1. Speed. The ultra-HD cameras in use at the PTT site require upload speeds of up to 11Mbps, which is beyond what can be delivered consistently on 4G. By contrast, mmWave 5G can deliver real-world upload speeds between 40-100Mbps.
  2. Capacity. In a future scenario where a site operates hundreds of ultra-HD cameras, a 4G network would quickly become overloaded. By contrast, mmWave 5G can provide three to four times more capacity thanks to wider and more efficient spectrum.
  3. Reliability. 5G offers numerous security and reliability improvements over 4G, which is particularly important for video surveillance requiring uninterrupted uptime. For example, 5G also allows network slicing, so that PTT’s security IoT systems can run on a network distinct from that used for consumer devices.

Mr. Rajiv Bawa, Chief Business Officer at dtac, added: “Apart from video surveillance cameras project, dtac and PTT also have a pipeline for 5G use cases, including fixed wireless broadband and industry-related solutions. Communication technology is critical to Thai businesses ability to remain competitive in the new normal.”

To develop these 5G use cases, dtac is working with industry partners in the fields of smart energy solutions for electrical distribution boards, warehouse sensors, intelligent reporting, smart vehicle tracking and smart farming.