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Worcestershire at the forefront of developing new technologies

Worcestershire 5G Testbed
Published Friday, 31st May 2019

Worcestershire at the forefront of developing new technologies

Worcestershire continues to lead the way when it comes to developing and trialling new technologies and ways of working.

The county is a key player in the development of digital connectivity, with 5G live factory trials and the testing of several applications on a Wi-Fi 6 network currently taking place within Worcestershire organisations.

Councillor Ken Pollock, Worcestershire County Council's Cabinet Member with Responsibility for Economy and Infrastructure, said: “It’s fantastic to see Worcestershire so heavily involved in advancing new technologies and to be at the heart of the progression in the digital connectivity field.

“It’s always our aim to be involved in projects that are leading the way, maintaining our ambition of keeping the county open for business.”

EE announced last week that Worcester would be one of ten towns and cities to launch as initial 5G locations for 2020. Worcester is part of the second wave to introduce 5G, following on from London, Cardiff, Edinburgh, Belfast, Birmingham and Manchester who launch their 5G services today (30 May).

This announcement builds on the work already taking place in the county, with the Worcestershire 5G Consortium, led by the Council and Worcestershire LEP providing the UK's first-ever 5G live factory trials. The trials involve Worcester Bosch, Yamazaki Mazak and OinetiQ, all taking part to test end-to-end application performance, taking initial measures of 5G speeds and latency.

The biggest cluster of cyber security firms outside of London is based in Cyber Valley, Worcestershire. 

The Consortium’s success was further established as they recently picked up the Most Commercially Viable Use Case at the inaugural 5G Realised 'Use Case Awards'.

Mark Stansfeld, Chair of the Worcestershire Local Enterprise Partnership and 5G Consortium, said: “Worcestershire is at the forefront of technological developments with the 5G Consortium running the UK’s first live 5G factory trial. Results indicate that 5G will significantly improve productivity in the manufacturing sector and UK economy as a whole.” 

Furthermore, Mettis Aerospace, based in Redditch, is now involved in testing several applications on a Wi-Fi 6 network at its 27-acre facility.

The designer and manufacturer produce precision-forged, machined and sub-assembled components for the aerospace and defence industry. The company will work with Wire Broadband Alliance (WBA) to test applications on a Wi-Fi 6 network.

This will enable the use of augmented reality, real-time monitoring of equipment and a host of other applications in an enterprise network environment designed to digitise Mettis' production line.