The Worcestershire 5G consortium, led by the County Council and Worcestershire LEP launched the first-ever British 5G factory trials at the Worcester Bosch factory earlier this week.
The switch on, which took place at Worcester Bosch, allows the UK to strive firmly ahead of its European peers in the race for 5G, and through the collaboration of partners, Worcestershire will be at the heart of the technological advance.
Welcoming the move, and the potential impact for the county, Councillor Ken Pollock, Cabinet Member for Economy and Infrastructure, at Worcestershire County Council said: "It's fantastic news for the county that the 5G factory trials in Worcestershire have begun. The project is a great example of what can be achieved by local partnerships working together with globally recognised brands and bringing real success.
I look forward to seeing the positive impact and industry learning that the trials will bring to Worcestershire and our ambition of keeping the county open for business."
These trials mark the start of Britain’s historic journey to reap the benefits of ‘Industry 4.0’, and will see smart factories being created. These factories will ensure the testbeds maximise the full potential of this next generation technology.
World-leading engineering company Worcester Bosch is testing 5G in order to improve factory output going forward. The company will also be exploring preventative maintenance utilising Internet of Things sensors and data analytics to predict failure.
Meanwhile multinational defence company QinetiQ has been designing security into the network and applications known as “security by design”.
Leading global manufacturer Yamazaki Mazak will also benefit from the trials, using 5G to conduct further trials that will demonstrate how 5G can be used to enhance factory productivity.
The technology will be used for two troubleshooting applications, one of these will allow senior engineers to remotely guide onsite engineers through machine maintenance.
The trials will all test end-to-end application performance, taking initial measures of 5G speeds and latency.
The technology offers more than just enhanced speed by providing the low latency, responsiveness and reach needed to transform the world we live and work in and in ways that its predecessors, including 4G, simply couldn’t.