New SKT and NTT Docomo partnership to focus on content, 6G, and the metaverse


The duo will collaborate to jointly develop technologies and services related to the metaverse and 6G, as well as content creation

Today, two of the largest telecoms operators in South Korea and Japan are joining forces with a far-reaching strategic partnership, encompassing both their telecoms and media interests.

The Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) will see SK Telecom (SKT) and NTT Docomo work together to jointly produce original content for their respective video distribution platforms, as well as working together for global expansion.

Perhaps more interesting, however, are the pair’s plans to collaborate on the metaverse.

SKT already has its own metaverse platform – Ifland – which it has been enhancing through various acquisitions over the last year, including 3D modelling and video specialists. SKT has also been very clear that it views Ifland as an international opportunity, having already struck a deal with Deutsche Telekom to offer the service in Germany.

Docomo, on the other hand, also offers a growing range of metaverse services, though for now these are fairly limited. Nonetheless, the company’s commitment to this emerging market has been plain to see this year, with the company making a formal push into the metaverse space back in March, setting up an industrial metaverse development company with about 150 engineers.

More recently, the Japanese operator created a new business unit called Qonoq, backed by roughly $412 million and specialising on hardware and software for extended reality. Qonoq is set to build on the work already conducted by Docomo’s NTT XR unit, which was set up back in March.

Now, Docomo and SKT say they will work together to co-create metaverse content, focussing on 3D models, volumetric videos, and virtual cities. In the long-term, the duo could even look to link their respective metaverse platforms, theoretically allowing customers to move seamlessly from one to the other.

Beyond the metaverse, the partnership also expands to both companies’ more traditional stomping grounds in the telecoms space, most notably the development of 5G and 6G technologies. Areas of focus reportedly include 5G stand alone, the use of millimetre-wave, Open RAN/vRAN, and network energy efficiency.

“By combining our technological capabilities and the know-how we have cultivated across years of experience, we hope to create new services that will allow customers around the world to experience new forms of excitement. We look forward to working with SK Telecom to develop the businesses of both companies,” explained NTT Docomo CEO Motoyuki Ii.

“The MOU has a significant meaning as it is a cooperation between the representative mobile operators of Korea and Japan. By working together with NTT DOCOMO in the area of future ICT, we will generate tangible results that drive global ICT innovation,” added SK Telecom CEO Ryu Young-sang.

While the metaverse remains largely intangible for the time being, telcos’ hunt for new revenue streams is very much real. Whether through industrial metaverse offerings or consumer streaming content, telcos need to find new ways of monetising their networks, and SKT and Docomo are looking to be at the forefront of that innovation.

Also in the news:
Vestager: Restricting “high-risk” vendors a “matter of urgency” for EU
UKRI selects BT consortium for intelligent drone project
IRIS cable set to link Iceland and Ireland

The post New SKT and NTT Docomo partnership to focus on content, 6G, and the metaverse first appeared on Total Telecom.

Recent Posts