High-speed 5G mobile network to be developed and tested in West Midlands - The Solihull Observer

High-speed 5G mobile network to be developed and tested in West Midlands

Solihull Editorial 4th Sep, 2018 Updated: 4th Sep, 2018   0

A HIGH-speed 5G mobile network will be developed and tested in the West Midlands.

The government has given the green light to the West Midlands Combined Authority’s (WMCA) bid to test the technology.

Those involved with the bid say 5G will help boost the region’s place at the heart of cutting-edge industries.

It will make it one of the key areas for the development of 5G in the UK after seeing off other competitors for the scheme.

Coventry and Birmingham are among those who will become 5G ‘hubs’ as part of the plans.

Andy Street, mayor of the West Midlands, said:“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 driverless 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 out people are linked to the economy of the future, the way companies do business, the way we deliver public services, the experience of travellers 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.”

Up to £50million is available for the project, subject to development and approval of a business plan.

This includes £25million from the government’s Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) and a further £25million match funding from regional partners.

An additional £25million may be made available at a later stage.

The government’s minister for digital, Margot James, said: “5G has the potential to dramatically transform the way we go about our daily lives, and we want the citizens of the UK to be amongst the first to experience all the opportunities and benefits this new technology will bring.

“The West Midlands Testbed, which is the first of its kind anywhere in the world, will be instrumental in helping us realise this ambition.”


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