The Swedish network equipment supplier Ericsson is increasingly positioning itself behind the controversial 5G world market leader Huawei.
With the conclusion of the 100th commercial 5G contract with a mobile network operator, a significant milestone has been reached, said Ericsson boss Börje Ekholm on Wednesday in Stockholm.
Ericsson has been trying for months to prove that you can keep up with Huawei. The 100th commercial agreement was signed with Telekom Slovenije. Ericsson was able to score even in the Chinese market. However, the acceptance of strategically important 5G orders in China had recently put a strain on the margin, as the Swedes had given their customers higher discounts because the competition was particularly fierce or the group promised lucrative follow-up orders.
In the technically complicated market for the new 5G mobile communications standard, which requires billions to be invested in research and development, there are only a comparatively few providers worldwide. In addition to the Chinese groups Huawei and ZTE, these are above all Ericsson and Nokia from Scandinavia and Samsung from South Korea. US providers such as Cisco and Aruba Networks (Hewlett Packard Enterprise) only play a role in marginal areas.
The US government in particular has political reservations about the suppliers from China. President Donald Trump’s administration alleges that Huawei is inappropriately close to the Chinese government and has raised security concerns. Under pressure from the USA, Great Britain has also decided to forego 5G equipment from Huawei, although this entails high additional costs when expanding the 5G network. 5G creates the basis, among other things, for networking machines in industry and intelligent devices, as well as for digitization in many areas of life.