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Nokia and Korea Telecom (KT) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding to collaborate and trial various 5G technologies, including NFV and network slicing, in order to develop new applications and business models for the operator's enterprise customers.

The joint work will include Service Orchestration and Assurance for the 5G era, with the aim of delivering end-to-end automation and new revenue opportunities.The trials are planned to take place in Seoul later this year.

Nokia, using its complete portfolio of software applications and services, and KT will trial an end-to-end network service platform in the country for network slicing, a key feature of 5G that will allow carriers to tailor different parts of their network capacity to different subscribers and applications, like connected vehicles and Internet of Things (IoT) use cases.

Leveraging KT's proprietary OPERA 5G end-to-end orchestrator platforms and Nokia's Cloudband Management Orchestration software suite, both companies are also working on a Proof of Concept (PoC) to automate interworking and 5G. OPERA is based on ETSI NFV international standard. The PoC will evaluate hosting, orchestrating, automating, and managing KT's 5G virtual network functions environment.

Hongbeom Jeon, Chief Technology Officer of Korea Telecom, said: "We are excited to partner with Nokia to conduct these path-breaking trials. Virtualization and network slicing will allow us to offer new and innovative services, such as connected cars, virtual reality, IoT use cases and smart factory, while helping us to bring down our operational costs. This collaboration will ensure that we are able to leverage Nokia's proven solutions and best-in-class professional services to provide a superior and differentiated experience to our subscribers."

Bhaskar Gorti, President of Nokia Software, said: "With Korea one of the lead countries in the early deployment of 5G, we are delighted to be working with KT to help them build a future-ready network. Nokia's end-to-end portfolio will empower KT to improve its customer experience and network efficiency."