Telenor confirmed has chosen Sweden’s Ericsson as the key technology provider for its fifth-generation (5G) telecoms network in Norway. Over the last ten years Telenor has used Huawei equipment for its 4G network, but that equipment from the Chinese company will be gradually phased out.
Telenor’s decision came amid US pressure, plus the fact that the Norwegian security services also warned against using equipment from the firm.
Norway’s PST security police has reportedly said only companies from nations with which Norway has close security cooperation should be allowed to supply 5G technology.
Norway co-operates with neighbours Sweden and Finland, but not with China.
“The 5G era is here. This will be the one technology that will most transform our society in the next decade,” Telenor Chief Executive Sigve Brekke tweeted.
He said Telenor had carried out an “extensive” security evaluation as well as considering factors such as technical quality, innovation and modernisation of the network.
“Based on the comprehensive and holistic evaluation, we have decided to introduce a new partner for this important technology shift in Norway,” he added.
A spokeswoman for Ericsson said the company was “very proud” to be chosen as a partner by Telenor but declined to comment further.
State-controlled Telenor is Norway’s biggest telecoms provider, and is active in the rest of the Nordic region as well as five Asian countries, serving some 183 million customers.
Meanwhile the use of Huawei network components in Norway will be phased out over a 4-5 year modernisation period, the head of Telenor Norway, Petter-Boerre Furberg, said.
Two smaller Norwegian operators, Ice and Telia, have picked Nokia and Ericsson respectively for their Norwegian 5G networks.