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AIS pushing 5G as a COVID recovery tool

CEO urges collaboration and innovation

Thailand’s largest mobile-phone network provider, AIS, says it plans to establish 5G technology in all 77 provinces, to give the country a new digital infrastructure that it believes will help Thailand to recover from the social and economic damage done by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Along with the plan, it has revealed a new network vision: ‘AIS 5G – Forging Thailand’s Recovery’.

The Chief Executive Officer of Advanced Info Service (AIS), Somchai Lertsutiwong, said AIS believed that the latest technology, like 5G, was ‘a new digital vein’ that was growing in importance and, from now on, would help and provide for the country’s growth.

He said AIS had invested more than Bt1.1 trillion on developing Thailand’s digital infrastructure over the past three decades, and the company had plans to continue that development by investing a further Bt35 to 45 billion this year.

“AIS is the first operator to launch 5G services in the country since February, and has expanded the 5G network throughout the country since last May,” Somchai said.

The aim of the company’s 5G expansion has become an effort to help Thailand recover from the COVID-19 crisis, which had brought unprecedented consequences throughout the world.

The crisis can be divided into three phases, he said. The first is the ‘Fall’ phase – the time of depression as the crisis deepened. Next is the ‘Fight’ phase, involving the struggle to overcome the crisis, and the third is the ‘Future’ phase, during which the country will create a sustainable future.

“In all phases, a digital infrastructure is needed as a strong foundation to support and enhance all capabilities,” Somchai said.

AIS’s 5G network, offering the best features of 5G – such as speed, strength and stability, with a fast response rate of Low Latency – can improve the capabilities of all major industrial sectors, providing a mechanism for recovery.

Somchai said AIS was collaborating with several partners to implement 5G technology in real use. In the public health sector, AIS had offered 5G with robots and artificial intelligence (Robots for Care) to support the work of medical personnel. In the severe stages of the pandemic, AIS was also offering telemedicine, AI-assisted CT scans, and a mobile stroke unit.

In the industrial sector, AIS was working with industrial-estate groups in the Eastern Economic Corridor (EEC), including Amata Corporation, Saha Pathana Inter Holding and WHA Group, to test aspects of the 5G Smart City concept.

It was also working with BBS Joint Venture Group, a co-investor in the U-Tapao Airport Development Project and Eastern Aviation City, to test 5G Smart Airport; and with the Port Authority of Thailand to test 5G in the Laem Chabang Port area.

Meanwhile, in the retail sector, AIS is working with the Central Retail Group to trial 5G Smart Retail.

“5G technology and collaboration between organizations will help transform Thailand to overcome the crisis. Therefore, I ask all economic sectors to join in the national recovery mission in response to the government’s ‘Thais Building the Nation Together’ policy,” he said.



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