The West Midlands will become the UK’s first 5G internet testers.
The West Midlands will get the extremely fast connectivity before anyone else. The region has beaten off competition from 18 other parts of the country to land this mega-deal.
The infrastructure will be built from Wolverhampton, all the way to Birmingham. It will see a major government cash investment (£50 million) which will be used to create the 5G network on public sector/service sites.
The initial 5G schemes will include: Live stream CCTV feeds, driver-less car testing and connected ambulances.
The live stream CCTV feeds will predominantly take place on buses, giving police officers access to the cameras. The driver-less car testing will be done by Jaguar Land Rover, giving them real-world testing. The connected ambulances will enable paramedics to get access to specialist advice while they are on call, this will be done through live streaming and video conferencing.
The Mayor of the West Midlands Andy Street was quoted by the Express & Star saying: “This announcement is game-changing for the West Midlands economy. This will be the backbone of our future economy and society.
“We have been working to put the foundations in place to grow the industries, which will create the jobs of the future, particularly around driver-less vehicles and life sciences where we have a genuine advantage.
“To deliver the future of these industries we need the power of 5G.
“The potential of this technology is endless – and we will enjoy the benefits first.
“From monitoring the health of babies and the elderly, to the way our people are linked to the economy of the future, the way companies do business, the way we deliver public services, the experience of travelers on public transport and the way we deliver City of Culture and the Commonwealth Games – everything can be made better thanks to the power of this technology.”
5G is very much still in the testing/development phase, however, the aim is to have nation wide 5G coverage by 2024. It will definitely bring us more uses of technology and help us take greater advancements in our public sector/services.