Tag Archives: 5G

BBC make the first live broadcast over a public 5G network

5G BBC newscast

You’re probably already aware that EE has just launched its 5G network in the UK, but it’s set to do more than just power up phones, and the BBC has already shown off one other thing it can do – live broadcasts.

In a UK first, the BBC and BT broadcast a live TV contribution over EE’s public 5G network. The clip was beamed from Covent Garden where it was recorded, back to BBC New Broadcasting House, and was delivered in high quality.

It was made possible through specialised 5G modems connected to BBC News cameras, and it sounds like a far preferable option to broadcasting using 4G, as 4G network links require multiple connections to deliver the capacity needed to carry the live video feed, whereas they only needed one connection in this 5G trial.

That therefore reduces the cost and complexity of the broadcast, which in turn makes it more viable to broadcast smaller live events than it would have been in the past.

The trial apparently also allowed the company to explore different encoding options to compress the video, but it wasn’t totally seamless, as apparently the broadcast team ran out of data on the first attempt, highlighting how data-hungry 5G can potentially be.

Alex Tempest, Managing Director, Wholesale at BT said: “We are delighted to demonstrate the power and innovation that 5G can bring to the media and broadcasting industry through our trial with the BBC. Whether on the street, in a stadium or on location, 5G provides a new dimension that can deliver the speed, efficiency and reliability that outside broadcasting requires. And gives broadcasters the ability to deploy equipment quickly and with ease, without having to worry about the connection.”

Serious speed

The broadcast in question was used to talk about EE’s 5G network itself, and during it the reporter (Rory Cellan-Jones) reported getting speeds of 260Mbps on his phone, which is far higher than you can expect on 4G. But EE has already said that peak 5G speeds on its network could exceed 1Gbps.

While this broadcast is a great example of the potential of 5G, it’s not the only 5G thing the BBC has been working on. It has also for example trialled live radio broadcasts over 5G.

5G could be big for broadcast and it’s not just the BBC that’s looking into it. EERohde & Schwarz and more are already exploring its potential too.

Source: James Rogerson. 5g.co.uk

 

Huawei is building the world’s first 5G smart hotel

5G Hotel

The InterContinental Shenzhen hotel is in the process of getting a 5G makeover, set to make it the world’s first 5G smart hotel.

With the help of Huawei and Shenzhen Telecom, this Chinese hotel will soon have continuous 5G coverage both indoors and outdoors, but that means a whole lot more than just faster internet for guests.

Having 5G on-site will allow the InterContinental Shenzhen to offer whole new services (see video below), such as 5G-powered ‘welcome robots’, 5G cloud games, 5G cloud computing terminals, and 5G cloud virtual reality rowing machines, as well as more ‘ordinary’ improvements, such as the ability to seamlessly stream 4K movies.

The goal of all this is to provide business travellers with a more efficient work environment, leisure travellers with immersive entertainment experiences, and overall to offer the “ultimate innovative luxury experience.”

Dr. Peter Zhou, chief marketing officer of Huawei Wireless Solution, said: “5G is here – from the 4K ultra high-definition live broadcast of CCTV’s Spring Festival Gala early this year to today’s 5G entertainment and business transformation of the InterContinental Shenzhen’s presidential suites, 5G technology has penetrated into different industries. In this cooperation, together with Shenzhen Telecom, we provided a 5G Digital Indoor System and a 5G Cloud X application that adapts to the hotel scenario. It is a demonstration of both parties’ leadership in end-to-end commercial application of 5G equipment.”

The first of many

This upgrade, which is the hotel industry’s first end-to-end 5G network with integrated terminals and cloud applications, could according to Huawei “open the door for digital transformation of entire hotel industry through 5G technology” so before long you might not have to go to China to experience to transformative power of 5G in a hotel setting.

The work is just one of many 5G projects Huawei is involved in. It has also recently created one of the world’s first 5G phones in the form of the foldable Huawei Mate X, and rolled out a range of indoors 5G network solutions, among other things.

There’s no news on when the UK might get its first 5G smart hotel, but with 5G networks set to launch here later in 2019 – with EE’s possibly being switched on as soon as this summer – there might not be a massive wait.

Source: James Rogerson. 5g.co.uk

 

O2’s 5G network to power autonomous vehicle testing

  • O2 set to support the testing of connected and autonomous vehicles (CAVs) with its 5G network.
  • Testing to take place as part of the DCMS funded AutoAir project at Millbrook Proving Ground in Bedfordshire.
  • O2 and consulting engineering firm Atkins join the project to accelerate the development of 5G-enabled intelligent transport systems.

O2 today announces that it will be the public and private network provider of 5G connectivity for the testing and development of CAV technology at Millbrook Proving Ground in Bedfordshire.

O2 will enable 5G connectivity to Millbrook testing facilities from June 2019, using its 2.3 GHz and 3.4GHz spectrum in advance of the first phase of its 5G rollout in Belfast, Cardiff, Edinburgh and London later this year.

The on-site network consists of 59 sites and 89 small cells and is operated by British wireless solution provider Dense Air. Under a 12 month agreement with the AutoAir project, O2 will integrate the sites and small cells into its public infrastructure.

Expanding expertise within the AutoAir 5G project 

The AutoAir 5G project is made up of a number of different partners from across the digital communications and automotive sectors, and has received a further £1.8m in funding from DCMS taking the total project investment from the government to nearly £6m. Matched industry funding totals more than £4.5m.

The group looks to accelerate the adoption of connected and self-driving technology in the UK, via trials supported by members including Dense Air, Airspan Networks, Millbrook, Blu Wireless, Real Wireless, the University of Surrey’s 5G Innovation Centre and the R&D arm of motorsport racing team McLaren.

This week the consortium’s ranks were further boosted by engineering firm Atkins, who have signed an agreement to lend their design and engineering expertise to the project, alongside O2.

 5G’s role in supporting CAV and intelligent transport systems

The low-latency and high capacity of 5G allows for vehicles to transmit large amounts of data, including 4K video, to intelligent cloud-based transport systems, which are expected to improve road safety and help traffic authorities to monitor and manage traffic flow.

Earlier this year, the AutoAir 5G Testbed and Trials consortium was able to prove this capability, during tests at Millbrook that saw a McLaren sports car receive and send data at 1 Gbit/s whilst driving round the site at 160 Mph, and real-time UltraHD 4K video sharing between a network of moving vehicles.

Commenting on the launch of O2’s 5G network at Millbrook, Brendan O’Reilly, O2’s Chief Technology Officer, said: “5G will play a key role in how our country develops over the next few years. If implemented properly, 5G has the potential to drive economic growth, create jobs and enable a new host of technologies – including self-driving vehicles. That’s why we’re delighted to be supporting the trial activity at Millbrook, alongside ambitious partners who share our vision of building a truly Mobile Britain.”

The announcement follows recent claims by UK ministers that driverless cars could be in full use on Britain’s roads by 2021, as the government presses forward with advanced trials for automated and connected vehicles.

“This project will transform the way we design, maintain and operate on our future networks,” said Lizi Stewart, Managing Director, Transportation UK, Atkins. “Developing the first 5G neutral network in the UK will allow us to continue our drive for innovation and industry-changing initiatives for the transportation sector.”

“The AutoAir consortium is pleased to welcome O2 and Atkins to the 2nd phase of the project”, said Paul Senior, CEO of Dense Air and Chief Strategy Officer of Airspan Networks. “O2’s integration and commercialisation of the 5G network at Millbrook to support both public and private mobile use cases is a world first and will be a reference deployment for the UK mobile industry as it moves to support for 5G applications for Industry 4.0, large enterprise and Government.

“Atkins participation in the project ensures that the lessons learned from building a hyper dense 5G network are translated into the design and engineering rules for next generation communication networks for transportation corridors.”

Source: 02

Liverpool 5G Health and Social Care given more funding

  Liverpool 5G testbed

A number of 5G first are happening in the UK, including Europe’s first dedicated 5G health and social care pilot, which has been running through Liverpool 5G Health and Social Care, and has just received an extra £1.48 million in funding to see it through another 12 months.

The funding is in recognition of the “great work” being done there, and £0.94 million of the funding comes from the government, while the other £0.54 million comes from consortium partners.

So what is all that funding getting us? A number of things. With that money and 5G tech, Liverpool 5G Health and Social Care has trialled the likes of:

  • A Loneliness Gaming and Quizzing app, developed with the help of people with learning difficulties.
  • A device called ‘WarnHydrate’, which is used to detect dehydration in older people.
  • A ‘push to talk’ loneliness app for isolated carers which lets them talk to other isolated carers.
  • Sensors and cameras which are installed in homes to detect falls, changes in temperature and unusual behaviour patterns.
  • ‘PAMAN’ – a video link to a local pharmacy, to help ensure people can take medicines at home safely.
  • ‘Telehealth in a Box’, which allows communication between The Royal Liverpool and Broadgreen University Trust and patients in the community.
  • 5G-supported VR devices that are being used as a palliative pain distraction in wards.

That’s in addition to trials of wireless 5G mesh networks that use existing fibre combined with infrastructure erected on lamp posts and the like, and which can be delivered cost effectively across urban areas.

Freeing up resources

Many of these technologies are focused on helping people manage long-term health conditions themselves from home, which means that health and care resources can be redirected to areas where they’re urgently needed. In other words, these initiatives could improve health and social care without requiring more manpower.

And they weren’t possible previously, as they require the reliability, consistency and speed of 5G to work effectively.

The fact that Liverpool 5G Health and Social Care has received this additional funding shows that these technologies are making a real difference, so it might not be long before they’re rolled out more widely.

And health is just one area that 5G looks set to transform. We’re also seeing 5G trials and testbeds focused on tourism, rural and agricultural use, automated vehicles, manufacturing and more.

Source: James Rogerson. 5g.co.uk

Operators Warm Up for 5G Sports Coverage Opportunity

5G sports coverage

Like the athletes and competitors on the field, many mobile operators are working to get their networks in shape and fighting fit to deliver 5G enterprise services to live sports and esports event organisers, according to a recent survey by Ovum on behalf of Amdocs.

Operators are eyeing the opportunities to not only give fans a more innovative experience via 5G services in the stadium but also make the arenas more efficient.

According to the survey, 87% of network operators intend to offer 5G services to major event enterprises. While 82% of operators said they plan to offer Internet of Things (IoT)-type services that would improve stadium management, more than half of operators said they aim to offer services that would improve the fan experience, such as being able to order food and drinks from their mobile devices.

By being part of the sports ecosystem, the potential benefits to operators include increased average revenue per user (APRU), growth of their enterprise businesses, improved customer loyalty, attracting new subscribers as well as expanding brand awareness among different consumer demographics.

Almost half of operators surveyed said that 5G will propel higher ARPU and about one third said it will drive enterprise business growth. For operators that run sports-related businesses, such as media services, half of respondents said they expect to add more sports TV subscribers, thanks to 5G. In addition, many operators (42%) said that virtual reality services will go mainstream with 5G.

Operators Need to Be Team Players in 5G Arena

To succeed in the 5G sports market opportunity, the survey found that operators are already thinking about partnering with other ecosystem players, including tournament organisers, social media companies, device manufacturers as well as video game companies.

Furthermore, a majority of operators (75%) plan to ink partnerships with broadcasters and over the top (OTT) service providers to discover new ways of delivering sports content to customers. And 73% said they want to partner with virtual reality app providers.

Gary Miles, Amdocs Chief Marketing Officer, said: “Working with new types of partners on 5G and sports will give operators a vital role in a new digital business ecosystem. Out of a multitude of potential 5G use cases, our research shows that sports and esports is certainly among the most compelling.”

Source: Michelle Donegan-5g.co.uk

Ericsson and China Unicom announce 5G smart harbor at the Port of Qingdao

 Introduction to the Port of Qingdao

  • Smart harbor development builds on accomplishments of successful six-month technical solution verification
  • Lays the groundwork for deployments in other ports around the world, also highlights enormous business potential in adjacent industry applications
  • One key finding of the trial is up to 70 percent of labor costs can be saved with this 5G automation upgrade compared to a traditional harbor

Ericsson (NASDAQ: ERIC) and China Unicom, the world’s fourth-largest mobile service provider by subscriber base, are developing a 5G smart harbor at the Port of Qingdao in China. The news follows a successful technical solution verification at the port of Qingdao and was jointly announced by the partners during a media event from Ericsson’s booth at Mobile World Congress 2019 in Barcelona, Spain.

One of the key findings of the field trial is up to 70 percent of labor costs can be saved when a harbor uses the 5G automation upgrade, compared to traditional harbors with a fully automated harbor. The labor cost savings are estimated based on the project of automation at the Qingdao Port automation.

Mr. Zhang Yong, General Manager of the China Unicom Research Institute, says: “China Unicom is proactively exploring industrial 5G business opportunities. We would like to cooperate with major 5G equipment suppliers and leading industrial equipment suppliers to create differentiated value to enterprise customers. The Qingdao 5G smart harbor project is a pilot of 5G industrial cooperation and we expect fruitful outcomes both in 5G network solutions and business aspects.“

Chris Houghton, Senior Vice President and Head of Market Area North East Asia at Ericsson, says: “Delivering revenue for the industry is important for 5G business success. Ericsson is glad to partner with China Unicom in developing industrial service opportunities. In the Qingdao 5G smart harbor project, we successfully showcased various 5G network capabilities, such as mili-second level end-to-end latency at Gbps level speed. This 5G smart harbor solution is not only applicable to the Port of Qingdao but can also be replicated with many other harbors and industries.”

The Port of Qingdao is among the top ten busiest ports in the world, processing approximately 19.3 million containers every year. The port has been operating Asia’s first fully-automated harbor since 2017 and will continue to be at the forefront of port innovation by using 5G.

The partners, in collaboration with the leading global port machinery manufacturer Shanghai Zhenhua Heavy Industries Co., Ltd. (ZPMC), achieved several ground-breaking accomplishments as part of their six-month 5G smart harbor technical solution verification in late 2018. This includes an automated ship-to-shore (STS) crane that lifted a container over a 5G connection operated from the control center.

The 5G connection included data traffic from more than 30 high-definition cameras as well as control data for a programmable logic controller (PLC). These operations required millisecond-level latency control signals, as well as stable, remote and real-time control, requirements which only key 5G technologies can deliver.

The field trial confirmed the feasibility and potential of 5G applications for the development of smart harbors, and as a result, Ericsson, China Unicom and other partners have agreed to jointly explore commercial 5G networks and solutions for smart harbors that include both automated harbors and the modernization of traditional harbors.

Source: Ericsson

Co-Star to launch a range of 2.92mm Series K-Connectors for 5G applications

2.9mm ra

Co-Star the Harrogate based ICT company who specialise in connecting the latest 5G technologies  are launching a range of 2.92mm K connectors for 5G applications up to 40GHz.

The 2.92mm (K) Connector’s interface is similar to that of SMA connectors, but utilizes an air dielectric and engineering-plastics support bead for higher frequency than PC3.5mm and SMA connectors. It is a precision connector designed to perform mode free to 40GHz. In response to the advent of the fifth generation of wireless communication protocols, the 2.92 mm (K) series of products are also suitable for millimeter wave applications.

This design increases the outer-conductor contact area at the interface for more reliable electrical performance and higher mechanical strength than PC3.5mm and SMA connectors.

The outer conductor measures 2.92mm  with a strong outer body wall compared to dielectric loaded interfaces of comparable size.

2.92mm connectors are mechanically compatible with SMA and 3.5mm connectors, but the male center pin is shortened to allow outer conductor engagement before the center contacts mate, preventing damage to the female contact pins.

2.9mm

Co-Star are developing 2.92mm male and female crimp connectors and a range of adaptors including male to male and male to female.

Tim Cosgrove of Co-Star commented:

“It’s important that Co-Star leads the way when it comes to connecting the latest technologies such as 5G. The range of 2.92mm connectors and adaptors that we have developed are designed to seamlessly connected antennas to the latest  5G connected devices and wireless router equipment and maximise the performance of the equipment”.

For more information on the availability and price of the 2.92mm adaptors and connectors please e-mail Co-Star: sales@co-star.co.uk or call: +44 (0) 1423 340066.

Source: Co-Star

 

How 5G could be monetised for telecom companies

Monetise 5G

A new short report from Matrixx has highlighted the new services telecommunications companies will be able to offer once 5G arrives.

With 5G set to commence its commercial rollout in limited form this year, there have been plenty of predictions concerning the benefits it will bring. Digital commerce platform company Matrixx has provided its own unique perspective on the matter in a report entitled ‘5 Key Opportunities in 5G’.

The report runs through five areas where 5G will present new or enhanced opportunities to the telecommunications companies that Matrixx counts as clients. Those are network slicingsmall cell as a service, smart family, Internet of Things (IoT), and enhanced broadband.

Slicing and small cells

Matrixx’s report then runs through some of the ways telcos will be able to monetise these 5G markets. For example, it mentions how network slicing – the ability to segment parts of a network – will be able to be offered as a service by telecoms companies, offering businesses the ability to run their own virtual networks.

In terms of small cells as a service, the report suggests allowing users to take advantage of small cell networks in, for example, shopping centres or sports venues, for high-bandwidth needs, such as virtual reality. Networks could make money by managing this infrastructure and related services for venues.

Smart family, IoT and enhanced broadband

Under the smart family banner, the Matrixx report points out that telecoms companies will be able to provide a one stop shop service that brings multiple connected home services under one umbrella: VR gaming, home security, remote meter monitoring and more. Having them all handled by one company could appeal to users, and also allow networks to expand their reach (and income potential) beyond just mobile.

For the IoT, the report talks about networks using it as a platform or service, which can be monetised through managed service delivery. With the IoT likely to provide services to millions of users in the near future, that could lead to extensive income potential for networks.

Finally, the report also refers to fresh 5G broadband services, described as ‘broadband+’. These could include ‘bandwidth and service’ or ‘bandwidth and applications’ combinations, such as offering music or video services along with a customer’s broadband. On the business side, 5G broadband could offer pooled bandwidth as part of a network slice, which the user can then define and utilize however they want.

“The days of ‘leading with the network’ are over as 5G, combined with capabilities such as VR, AI and ML, will have a profound impact on the digital user experience,” concludes the Matrixx report. “The complexities, variabilities and scale of that ‘Digital Service Provider’ offering require a fundamental shift and will be the defining approach of this era.”

So in other words 5G will open up many new usage cases and with them many new ways to monetise mobile data. That’s good news not just for networks but also for users, as it incentivises mobile networks to build a strong 5G service. It just requires the networks to seize the opportunities presented to them.

Source: Jon Mundy and James Rogerson- 5g.co.uk

Vodafone using manhole covers to ‘build 5G cities’

Vodafone  manhole

Vodafone is using “yesterday’s infrastructure” to build tomorrow’s smart cities. The operator is installing small antennae within manhole covers, as well as on lamp-posts and phone boxes.

The aim is to boost speed and extend coverage of today’s 4G networks in high-traffic areas such as busy roads, town centres and shopping malls. Vodafone says the tech can then be easily upgraded to make way for 5G.

Another benefit, the company says, is that installing equipment on manhole covers causes minimal disruption for businesses and citizens – no construction work or street closures are required. Further, the landscape is not altered, making the antennae instalments ideal for busy public spaces.

In time for New Year

Vodafone has installed two types of connected manhole covers at its headquarters in Newbury. One is purpose-built and the other uses existing manhole covers. The antennae-equipped manhole covers can carry calls and internet access over 200 metres using only a small amount of power.

Further, Vodafone plans to roll 4G out beneath its own manhole covers, which it inherited through the acquisition of Cable & Wireless Worldwide in 2012 as well as those of utility providers across the UK.

Vodafone is also fitting 4G antennae to traditional phone boxes along Edinburgh’s Princes Street – it says these will be in place ahead of the New Year’s Even Hogmanay celebrations.

The company says phone boxes are ideal homes for antennae in places where mobile masts would be hard to install due to the need for a power supply and fibre optic cable connections.

Looking ahead to 5G

The antennae are connected using Vodafone’s high-speed fibre converged network.

A statement on the initiative from Vodafone said: “These fibre-connected 5G-enabled small antennae are the foundation on which connected smart cities will be built.”

There are high hopes for 5G to advance smart cities – for example, enabling connected traffic lights which automatically re-route traffic away from congested areas and allowing city councils to monitor their infrastructure intelligently and deploy predictive or on-demand maintenance.

Vodafone UK Chief Executive Nick Jeffery said: “We are committed to providing customers with the best network possible by drawing on our strengths in innovation and strong UK heritage. It is great to be able to use yesterday’s infrastructure – from phone boxes to manhole covers – to deliver the services of tomorrow.  This is one of the ways we are extending our 4G services to areas other networks cannot reach, and getting ready for 5G.”

Source: Sarah Wray-5g.co.uk

 

02 launches Massive MIMO 5G pilot in London

O2 massive mimo

02 and Nokia are rolling out two Massive MIMO (multiple input-multiple output) trials in the King’s Cross and Marble Arch areas of London. They say this work will pave the way for 5G deployment across the capital.

Massive MIMO makes mobile networks more efficient by allowing multiple beams of data to be transmitted from the antennas to the device. This boosts speed and capacity.

The locations have been specifically chosen as they have high levels of data traffic. 02 plans to boost coverage in these areas and assess the technology for roll-out elsewhere.

Over 95 million people pass through the King’s Cross/St Pancras each year and more than 14 million people travelled through Marble Arch in 2017.

The pilot will deploy Nokia’s Massive MIMO technology as well as the 2.3GHz spectrum that O2 won in Ofcom’s auction earlier this year. O2 was the only UK network to secure extra 2.3GHz capacity.

Laying 5G’s foundations

02 says that as well as boosting capacity in these areas today, the trial will also lay important foundations for 5G.

Massive MIMO technology is expected to play a crucial role in meeting the increased data demand that 5G will drive. Ofcom’s 2018 Communications Market report finds that the average user consumes 1.9 GB  of data per month. Earlier this year, GiffGaff predicted that the average user will consume 98.34GB per month by 2025.

Brendan O’Reilly, CTO, Telefonica UK, said: “We recognise that customers’ need for mobile data in London and other urban areas continues to grow at a rapid pace. This is why we are working with Nokia to trial Massive MIMO and to explore the opportunities to provide the increased capacity and denser coverage for our customers, in the areas they need it most.”

Source: Sarah Wray-www.5g.co.uk