Working alongside Ericsson, Tele2 has begun a process of rapidly upgrading its network infrastructure to support 5G

Back in 2019, Tele2 signed a five-year deal with Ericsson to deploy 50,000 5G base stations across Russia.
Now, just 18 months later, Tele2 has announced that they are halfway towards that goal, having deployed 25,000 base stations in 27 Russian regions.
“Our development enables Tele2’s subscribers the opportunity to use mobile internet services in high quality,” said Sebastian Tolstoy, Head of Ericsson in Russia. “As all our network equipment in Russia supports an upgrade to 5G technologies through remote software installation, operators in Russia are able to launch new services as soon as they get the appropriate licenses.”
The Russian regulator decided to ditch plans to 5G auction spectrum earlier this year, instead opting to allocate the licences directly. Last month, MTS was the first Russian telco to be granted such a licence, gaining spectrum in the 24.25–24.65 GHz mmWave band.
Ericsson is also a key partner of MTS, with a deal signed back in March to modernise the telco’s current network infrastructure, as well as incorporating Ericsson’s dynamic spectrum sharing tech.
However, Ericsson may soon have additional competition for the spoils of Russia’s 5G revolution. Reports from the Interfax news agency cite Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov as saying the country is ready to cooperate with Chinese giant Huawei on 5G. 
US sanctions continue to rain down on the Chinese vendor, with the latest iteration of sanctions causing serious harm to their semiconductor supply chain. The Trump Administration also continues to pressure countries around the world to ban the company from its 5G networks on grounds of compromised security. Russia, unsurprisingly, has opposed US policy on the matter from the beginning, with Lavrov saying that the Russian government is interested in collaborating with other countries to create the next generation of technology.
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