SK Telecom with Swisscom: World’s First “5G” Roaming Service

SK Telecom announced today that it will begin the world’s first 5G roaming service [1] from midnight KST on July 16 through a strategic partnership with Swisscom, the largest telecommunications provider in Switzerland.

Note 1.  Not only is there no standard for “5G’ roaming (or even signaling.control plane), but there are no standards for anything related to 5G radio and non radio aspects.  Hence, this “5G’ roaming agreement is specific to these two carriers.  They have obviously agreed on a roaming/handoff spec for 5G NR (3GPP Rel 15) in the data plane and LTE signaling in the control plane.

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Swisscom, which boasts over 6 million mobile subscriptions, started to roll out its 5G network on April 17th. The company currently provides 5G service in 110 cities and villages including Zurich, Geneva and Bern as well as rural and touristic areas.

SK Telecom’s customers using Samsung Galaxy S10 5G smartphone will be able to use 5G roaming service through Swisscom when visiting Switzerland after upgrading their devices with the latest software update. In the future, SK Telecom plans to provide software upgrades to LG V50 users and further expand 5G roaming service to other countries around the globe.

“SK Telecom once again proved its leadership in advanced roaming technology with the launch of world’s first 5G roaming service” said Han Myung-jin, Vice President and Head of MNO Business Supporting Group of SK Telecom. “We will continuously expand our 5G roaming service to enhance customer experience and benefits.”

Meanwhile, with the aim to enable its customers to make and receive high-quality, free-of-charge international roaming voice calls while travelling to 171 countries across the world, SK Telecom launched ‘baro’ on December 17, 2018. As of June 2019, ‘baro’ has attracted 2.2 million users and 38 million cumulative calls (total of 800,000 hours of voice calls). Moreover, ‘baro’ won the ‘Best Mobile Technology Breakthrough in Asia’ award at the 2019 Asia Mobile Awards held as part of MWC19 Shanghai.

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About SK Telecom:

SK Telecom is the largest mobile operator in Korea with nearly 50 percent of the market share. As the pioneer of all generations of mobile networks, the company has commercialized the fifth generation (5G) network on December 1, 2018 and announced the first 5G smartphone subscribers on April 3, 2019. With its world’s best 5G, SK Telecom is set to realize the Age of Hyper-Innovation by transforming the way customers work, live and play.

Building on its strength in mobile services, the company is also creating unprecedented value in diverse ICT-related markets including media, security and commerce.

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For more information, please contact:

skt_press@sk.com or sktelecom@bcw-global.com.

About Swisscom:

Swisscom, Switzerland’s leading telecoms company and one of its leading IT companies, is headquartered in Ittigen, close to the capital city Berne. Outside Switzerland, Swisscom has a presence on the Italian market in the guise of Fastweb. About 20,000 employees generated sales of CHF 2’860 million to the end of the 1st Quarter 2019. It is 51% Confederation-owned and is one of Switzerland’s most sustainable and innovative companies.

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Media Contacts:

Yong-jae Lee

SK Telecom Co. Ltd.

(822) 6100 3838

(8210) 3129 6880

yjlee6880@sk.com

Irene Kim

SK Telecom Co. Ltd.

(822) 6100 3867

(8210) 8936 0062

gahaekim@sk.com

Ha-young Lee

BCW Korea

(822) 3782 6421

Hayoung.Lee@bcw-global.com

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