Telenor opens first commercial 5G network in Norway


Telenor’s commercial 5G network opens today in nine different cities and villages across Norway, making Telenor the first mobile operator in the country to offer 5G to customers.

“Telenor is proud to be the first mobile operator to launch a commercial 5G network in Norway, as we have worked tirelessly to stay at the forefront of the 5G development. By bringing Norway into a new technological age, today’s opening marks another milestone in Telenor’s 165-year-long history. We expect 5G to be the key driver of transformation in this decade, and we are very much looking forward to continuing the roll-out of 5G to our customers,” says Sigve Brekke, President and CEO of Telenor Group.

The network of the future is here

It was intended that the official opening of Norway’s first commercial 5G network would take place in the country’s tech capital of Trondheim. Due to the current situation with COVID-19, Telenor has decided to cancel the event and instead host the opening as a virtual video conference.

“This is a day we have been looking forward to for a long time. We launched our first 5G pilot as early as 2018, and since then we have been experimenting and exploring, trying to learn as much as we possibly can. Today, we are not only opening our 5G network in the city of Trondheim, we are also opening the very first commercial 5G network in Norway. In addition, we are making 5G commercially available in all locations where we, until now, have been running tests. As of today, Telenor customers with a 5G device will at these locations be able to connect to the mobile network of the future,” says Petter-Børre Furberg, CEO of Telenor Norway.

Crucial for value creation

Linda Hofstad Helleland, Norway’s Minister of Regional Development and Digitalisation, is pleased that 5G, which is crucial for Norwegian value creation and digitisation, is now commercially available.

“Norway has some of the world's fastest mobile networks, and with 5G, they become faster and even more reliable. Given the current situation in Norway, we see how important the digital infrastructure is for those quarantined and those working from home. The new 5G network will provide better mobile coverage and gradually better access to broadband across the country, which will reduce the vulnerability of an increasingly digitised society,” says Helleland.

Ambitious plans for 2020

For the past two years, Telenor has focused on learning as much as possible about the qualities of the new mobile network before making it available to the public. This is done to ensure that customers receive optimal 5G quality. Now that the 5G network has officially opened, Telenor is emphasising that this is just the beginning of what is yet to come.

“We have worked hard to become the first mobile operator in Norway to open the 5G network, and are now fully focused on our continued plans. During 2021, we will upgrade close to 2,000 base stations, while a total of 8,500 base stations will be upgraded within the next four to five years,” Furberg concludes.

Telenor Norway and 5G:

  • Telenor opened Scandinavia’s first 5G pilot in Kongsberg on 8 November 2018.

  • Telenor launched Scandinavia’s largest 5G pilot in Elverum on September 26, 2019. In addition, Telenor announced pilots in nine further locations across the country and conducted Norway’s first video call over 5G.

  • Telenor launched the world’s northernmost 5G pilot on the Norwegian archipelago of Svalbard.

  • Telenor's 5G network was commercially launched on 13 March 2020. Telenor customers with a 5G device can now connect to the next generation mobile network in nine different locations in Norway.

  • Telenor will start development of 5G in Oslo, Bergen, Stavanger and Sandnes. The new mobile network will open in these cities during 2020.

  • Telenor builds 5G in Trondheim in collaboration with Ericsson.

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