The Scotland 5G Centre is working with Vodafone to develop new technology ‘use cases’, and is looking to pioneer next generation connectivity for key industries including manufacturing, healthcare, and energy.
Scotland 5G Centre teamed up with the telecoms giant to develop two new 5G Mobile Private Networks (MPNs) at the centre’s regional innovation hubs in Aberdeen and HALO Kilmarnock.
The hubs will help organisations to deliver new applications and services using Vodafone 5G connectivity. Specialist staff will help companies to develop, prototype and test real-world, 5G-powered applications and use cases.
By identifying issues faced by local businesses, the partnership will help spur growth in the regions and build use cases that go beyond the ‘proof of concept’ stage.
The insights from local businesses will help The Scotland 5G Centre to identify any gaps in skills or infrastructure to support the adoption of emerging technologies.
From commission to switch on, the two 5G MPNs were delivered in less than eight weeks.
In Aberdeen, the 5G MPN will power the ONE Tech Hub initiative, a co-working space for entrepreneurs, established businesses, and regional start-ups to drive digitisation and economic diversification in North East Scotland, under the auspices of Opportunity North East, founded by Sir Ian Wood, the oil industry magnate, in 2016.
A particular area of focus will be how new connectivity and digital services can support the energy, renewables and utilities sector, a major employer in the area.
At the Kilmarnock site, the 5G MPN will power HALO Enterprise and Innovation Centre, a regeneration initiative – focused on education and collaboration – to revitalise urban cities and towns.
Kim Moran-Hogg, regional director for Vodafone UK, said:
“We are working with The Scotland 5G Centre to help open up new opportunities for Scottish businesses. By combining our connectivity with local knowledge of the businesses and industries, we can help the Scottish economy to benefit from a 5G-connected world.”
“This partnership is about understanding the problems that local businesses face, and developing cutting edge solutions together. 5G will power the future of Scotland’s economy, and help us build an inclusive and sustainable digital society.”
Vodafone has also worked with other UK organisations on 5G private networks. It helped Plymouth City Council and Plymouth Marine Laboratory build and manage an MPN, resulting in the ‘worlds’ first marine-based 5G testbed’, enabling local and international companies and research organisations.
It also worked with motor manufacturer Ford in Essex to create the ‘factory of the future’.
“We are extremely excited to work with Vodafone at these two additional locations as part of our network of Innovation hubs across Scotland.
Working together to provide 5G access, market education and insight for digital infrastructure and it’s potential ROI for industry offers a competitive advantage to organisations that utilise these unique and high quality services.
We are looking forward to supporting ambitious businesses on their 5G journey as we continue to evolve the 5G ecosystem for the benefit of Scottish citizens and the economy.”