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Huawei crackdown

Huawei excluded from SoftBank's 5G network

Japanese telecom carrier to procure equipment from Ericsson and Nokia

SoftBank appears to be complying with the wishes of the U.S. government in the selection of suppliers for its 5G network. (Photo by Ken Kobayashi)
SoftBank appears to be complying with the wishes of the U.S. government in the selection of suppliers for its 5G network. (Photo by Ken Kobayashi)

TOKYO -- SoftBank Corp. has decided to purchase 5G base stations from Ericsson and Nokia in a blow to Huawei Technologies as the U.S. pressures allies to keep the Chinese company out of fifth-generation wireless networks.

The Swedish and Finnish vendors separately announced Wednesday that they have been chosen for SoftBank's 5G service, which the Japanese telecommunications giant hopes to bring into commercial service next spring.

The decision by the telecom unit of SoftBank Group was closely watched, since it has used base stations from all three companies in existing networks.

SoftBank has declined to comment on the matter. But Chief Technology Officer Junichi Miyakawa said in April that the company "would be able to comply with the government's wishes," hinting that Huawei's equipment would be kept out.

The Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications allocated spectrum for 5G service to four carriers that month, and each is moving to install 5G base stations this year. Ericsson, Nokia and Huawei are the three big global players in this field.

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