Today marks the start of the 5G Week Event, a two-day event for which AWTG is a Gold Sponsor. Tony Sceales, Chairman of AWTG began proceedings with a rousing welcome speech. The morning panel sessions focused on large-scale projects making use of advanced communications technology.
David Green, Partner at Deliotte Consulting, highlighted the immense potential for revenue growth that could come from fixed wireless access and private 5G. Cost reductions from neutral host and Open Networks were also discussed, and it was revealed that private 5G is rapidly becoming the industry norm for industries such as manufacturing, transport, logistics, healthcare, defense and mining. Despite the initial slow start for 5G technology, experts anticipate that it will begin to accelerate rapidly, with visible changes coming this 2023.
Andy Conway, Director of Solutions and Innovation at BAI Communications UK, and Oliver Bradley, Managing Director of Macquarie Capital, both focused on the need for large-scale deployment, specifically Transport for London. While Andy spoke of the importance of fibre rollouts in scaling 5G and meeting demands, Ros Singleton, CEO of Spring Fibre, mentioned that consumers are often unable to perceive the benefits of such rollouts due to their costly nature. Oliver suggested that the convergence between fixed and wireless networks could be a viable solution to this, allowing services to be provided almost everywhere.
Fireside Chat – Ericsson Case Study
At the 5G Week Afternoon session, a case study from Ericsson showcased the concept of a “network in a box” for standalone deployments in Jaguar Land Rover. Stephen Mason, Digital (IT) Product and Strategy Manager for Global Industrial Operations at Jaguar Land Rover explained that due to their business relying on connected devices, wireless connectivity was necessary and could not be constrained by a physical network. This is where 5G became important since its main advantages are the latency and mobility over WiFi’s limitations , in particular interference resistance being critical especially when dealing with numerous connected devices on shop floors.
Duncan Hawkins, VP Enterprise Sales of Ericsson added that the beauty of a network in a box is its portability, making it easier to deploy within private enterprises.
Future of Advanced Large Scale Public Sector Communication Projects
Discussed the potential for advanced large-scale public sector communication projects. Raj Mack from Delivering a Digital Birmingham believes that 5G infrastructure can provide economic and social advantages to the city, while Simon Rowell from DCMS views that initiatives have already progressed through diversification strategies. Robert Franks from WM5G is focusing on accelerating network rollout, as well as health and social care initiatives. Kieran Arnold of Satellite Applications Catapult sees satellites becoming part of mobile technology in the future, and Raj’s vision for a smart city involves utilising data for new insights.
The 5G Week’s Enterprise Case Study panel discussion explored how 5G technology can benefit healthcare. Milos Kresojevic from NHS South London and Maudsley discussed the need to select the right hospital as an early adopter and focus on the use case of synching medicines with what is needed by practitioners. Steve Evans from Nokia recalled their first engagement in June 2021 and highlighted why 5G is needed for a hospital setting. Additionally, the benefits of IoT implementation in 5G was discussed.
Tony Sceales, Chairman of AWTG, facilitated a panel discussion on Network Operator’s View, exploring the investment and focus for consumer 5G and its relationship to enterprise mobility. Panelists discussed standalone deployment, availability of devices, cloud providers, customer expectations, use cases, PoC to RFP requirement of private enterprises, network slicing, access to infrastructure, and the need to transform the way businesses do business. All agreed that access to infrastructure and good user experiences are the key to wider adoption of 5G.
Panel Discussion about Project Case Study announces CellNex deploying its technology at the Centre for Process Innovation (CPI) in the North East. CPI is a key member of the Catapult network and provides a platform to deploy new technologies and understand how they can be successfully introduced into the market. Cellnex believes that with 5G, it can help enterprise customers solve their wireless connectivity needs more effectively.
On the concept of Smart Rural in the UK, according to Paddy Paddison, CTO of Wildanet Ltd., the company is making strides in enabling rural UK with project funding such as Project Gigabit. Chris Taylor, Connecting Shropshire Programme Manager for Ceren adds that they are looking into alternative solutions to provide rural connectivity, especially when it comes to agricultural use cases. Chris also points out that in order to increase productivity and improve lives in rural areas, a large budget is set aside for assistive technologies, and therefore demand for connectivity increases as well. While Chris does not think gigabit speeds are necessary, he believes there is still a need to provide equitable broadband in rural areas.
The Smart City Project in Sunderland has made massive strides forward in its regeneration efforts, making it an ideal landscape for innovation. BAI Communications were awarded the competitive tendering process to ensure that Sunderland would not have to wait for long for a 5G network rollout. As GM of BAI Communications, Claire Venners is at the forefront of this transformation, delivering a 5G network, City-wide Wi-Fi and LoraWAN networks across Sunderland. This advanced infrastructure creates more opportunities for businesses and residents of Sunderland, as well as those from outside looking to set up operations in the city. Through the Smart City Project, Sunderland will become a global hub for innovations and advancements.
These were just some of the crucial key points discussed and more will be shared on the afternoon session discussing the same topic.
Sessions are streamed live on the 5G WEEK Website.