Media Release - Vodafone has put a spotlight on the kind of cutting edge innovation it expects to see in a ‘Future 5G’ world at a technology showcase in Auckland today.
5G or ‘fifth generation’ is an evolution of GSMA radio networking and is set to dramatically increase the speed at which data can navigate across mobile networks.
By leveraging existing network infrastructure, 5G network upgrades will pave the way for a huge range of high-speed and high-capacity applications to happen easily over wireless networks.
This means futuristic applications like driverless cars, connected robotics and live virtual reality could eventually become commonplace throughout society.
Partnering with Nokia, Vodafone recently trialled a 5G connection at its InnoV8 Auckland headquarters. This pre-standard, new radio system (standalone) was used to power a range of futuristic applications at today’s ‘Future 5G’ showcase.
Applications included low-latency robots, live virtual reality performances and the world’s first gaming tournament over 5G. The tournament featured players from Vodafone staff and one of Australasia’s top Pro League of Legends teams ‘Tectonic’, and was broadcast to thousands of fans through the e-sports platform, Twitch.
Vodafone Chief Executive Russell Stanners said, “Today’s 5G event is about showcasing how we can easily evolve our existing 4G and 4G+ networks to 5G, and in doing so, prepare our customers and the country for the high speed, low latency applications expected in a future 5G world.
“As 5G is an incremental upgrade to our existing mobile network, these services will be deployed throughout New Zealand in both urban and rural settings – opening up a world of possibility for digital innovation everywhere,” Russell said.
The trial 5G system powering the showcase is based on multi-vendor equipment including Nokia’s AirScale and Airframe platforms, connecting to a device working on third party chipsets.
This 5G system operates in the millimetre wavelength spectrum band, and Vodafone has plans to test it across the 3.5GHz band soon.
Russell adds, “As a leading global mobile player Vodafone has been actively involved in leading and shaping the 5G evolution from the beginning with trials and partnerships underway across the world. Vodafone will continue to be at the forefront of the development of 5G, and with our Kiwi ingenuity we will be working hard to bring our customers the latest developments in 5G as soon as they become available.”