The UK government has published a call for interested participants in a ‘5G Urban Connected Communities’ project.
The government is looking for both public as well as private sector participants, such as mobile operators, service providers and equipment suppliers. As part of the government’s 5G testbed programme, the government intends to set up a large-scale, citywide testbed for 5G.
The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport said participants will test “how new technology can make urban communities inherently safer, greener, more efficient and more attractive places to live”. The participating companies are expected to explore use cases across verticals such as healthcare, mobility, tourism and manufacturing.
The project is also expected to specifically target ‘pinch-points’ of poor connectivity in cities, including areas of high demand such as mainline stations or city centres where heavy usage rather than a lack of signal leads to not-spots.
The project will be funded from the GBP 200 million assigned by the government to develop 5G technologies. The government has planned to identify a location in summer 2018 through a competitive process. The urban project will be followed in the summer by a large-scale Rural Connected Communities Project.