5G-connected edge computing will be trialled at Commonwealth Bank branches in an attempt to reduce on site network infrastructure, under a new partnership between the bank, Ericsson and Telstra.

According to the telco it is the first time in Australia that technology providers and the financial services sector have partnered to test 5G edge computing use cases and network capabilities on the new network.

Edge computing is a network architecture that enables cloud computing to be done on site or premise with reduced latency. Adding 5G – a faster network with much lower latency – could amplify the benefits.

For financial services, the approach can “help to reduce the network infrastructure currently required at individual bank branches”, according to Telstra.

The telco said its new trials are expected to begin in the coming months.

“5G edge computing is all about bringing the network closer to the user or application,” said Nikos Katinakis, Telstra’s group executive networks and IT, at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona.

“For financial institutions like Commonwealth Bank, it will help to enhance existing banking applications as well as deliver new use cases such as artificial intelligence, all supported by a range of software defined networking solutions.

“These real world trials will provide valuable lessons and insights for Telstra, our customers, and vendor partners as we continue to deploy 5G. They will also help us understand which use cases will best serve our customers and have the greatest monetisation potential. The learnings on 5G and edge computing will be used across a broad range of industries. 

Also speaking with Telstra at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Emilio Romeo, head of Ericsson Australia and New Zealand said, “We are working with Telstra, and leading Australian financial institution, Commonwealth Bank to push the boundaries of technology and create new and agile wireless network services across Telstra’s network.” 

“Through this collaboration we will see first-hand the benefit that 5G will bring to a range of industries, and we’re delighted to be collaborating with these two leading businesses, to drive 5G innovation in Australia.”

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