Updated; 01-03-2018, 15:29

First live demo of a broadband internet connection in an aircraft: German national goalkeeper Manual Neuer reports live from a plane to the Deutsche Telekom press conference at the Mobile World Congress. That’s one of the company’s many trade fair highlights presented by Claudia Nemat.

Director of Deutsche Telekom, Tim Höttges and goalkeeper of Bayern Munchen, Manual Neuer realized a live communication through Facetime. This live connection through LTE between the clouds and the ground marked the first time of its kind. Neuer was flying somewhere above Fanconia, while Höttges was at the Congress of Barcelona, inside the Deutsche Telekom booth, surrounded by journalists and visitors of the fair.

The live demo was clear proof of the performance and capabilities of the new Deutsche Telekom network, which is specially designed for inflight use. Around 300 LTE antennas located across Europe are integrated using partner technologies to create the European Aviation Network (EAN), providing fast broadband access in the air for passengers and airlines. In early February, Deutsche Telekom had announced that the LTW antennas were primed and prepared for takeoff.

At the press conference, Claudia Nemat, Board Member, Technology and Innovation at Deutsche Telekom, presented what Deutsche Telekom had brought along to the world’s largest mobile communications exhibition this year. Three aspects are particularly important to her:

1. We not only talk about digitization trends -we make them come true

The example of the connected drone: Deutsche Telekom is making them visible on air traffic controller radar screens and is facilitating safe drone flights beyond their operators’ line of sight. Until now, a drone could not be identified, but a “flying SIM card” is very much able to be seen. This enables dangerous encounters in airspace to be avoided. A further example: Blockchain. Deutsche Telekom uses the secure chain of data as a basis for a “City Pass” to simplify day-to-day life in cities. By using it, citizens will be able to pay for services such as bike sharing or parking. Blockchain is therefore not only something for specialized financial services, it’s also something valuable for everyday applications. In short: for Deutsche Telekom, innovation doesn’t just mean being a part of a trend, it’s rather about finding a solution to a customer problem.

2. We’re a technology leader with a fantastic network infrastructure

"Digitalization needs infrastructure. We are building networks all over Europe that have excellent quality -both in the fixed network and mobile -and we are already working today with the technology on tomorrow," says Claudia Nemat. Deutsche Telekom establishes this infrastructure better than all others and sets the standards. Claudia Nemat emphasized the leading role Deutsche Telekom enjoys in the expansion of fiber optics as well as in NB-IoT (Narrow Band Internet of Things) in Europe and the USA. And: Deutsche Telekom is driving the new 5G communication standard forward, which offers 1,000-fold higher capacities, ten times more speed and a tenfold faster network response time. The company presented a world premiere shwing the smooth interplay with 5G: namely between a base station from Huawei, a platform from Intel, and a test network environment from Deutsche Telekom. It all runs in complete accordance with the new 5G standard. Customers should be able to depend on reliable communication wherever they are. An important step on the pathway to 5G market maturity. And in the Johannstadt district in Dresden, work is currently underway on deploying 5G for energy management purposes. There, energy that is produced decentrally in households is intelligently managed with 5G. "We ensure that 5G applications will become reality," says Claudia Nemat. And just as exciting: new wireless technologies enabling gigabit speeds (“virtual fiber”). In the future, high bandwidths will be able to reach the home from the street -without the need to lay a cable.

3. We provide exceptional technology for the best customer experience

A fast, stable and secure network is the basis for future applications such as artificial intelligence. Or data glasses, for which Deutsche Telekom is working together with Zeiss -the best optics with the best network. "The technology of tomorrow becomes more intuitive, data glasses become the manuals of the 21st century, and speech control becomes for the digital consumer world what the computer mouse was for the PC world," says Claudia Nemat. "That’s why we work with partners to develop practical solutions for customers." Such as the Smart Speaker for the home, for which Deutsche Telekom cooperated with large, French telecommunications firm Orange. At the MWC, the company shows how it creates real applications out of technology trends. Claudia Nemat: “We lead in technology – now, tomorrow and in future.”