The UK government will create the country’s first ‘5G city’ in a trail of new high-speed connectivity that’s expected to be followed by a nationwide 5G rollout.
The Urban Connected Communities Project is the next step in the 5G Testbed and Trials programme, and after a successful bid by the West of England Combined Authority, Bristol is to be one of the first cities in the UK to trial the new networks.
Bristol and Bath are the two cities that have been picked by the government, and the rollout will include tourist attractions including M Shed, Millennium Square, the Roman, and We The Curious.
Speaking about the news, Metro Mayer, Tim Bowles, said:
“Imagine a virtual Roman soldier showing you around the Roman Baths.
“Now imagine this moving 360 degrees on your mobile phone at a resolution you have never experienced before – that’s what 5G technology can offer.
“The 5G Smart Tourism bid will allow us to trial some exciting technology at our top tourist attractions, whilst looking at wider and longer-term benefits for our region.
“This new technology holds the key to a more advanced, sustainable and smart future which will revolutionise the way we all live, travel and work.”
Bristol’s Mayor, Marvin Rees, added:
“Our work with the University of Bristol to develop the city’s platform for cutting edge 5G research was mentioned recently when Bristol was announced as one of the world’s leading smart cities of the future.
“This announcement of further funding will help Bristol to continue being an internationally recognised testbed for new technologies which is already helping us to find real new innovative solutions to help our city pave the way to become a more inclusive and fairer society.”
The UK government website lists other purposes that 5G could have for Bristol and Bath, including health care professionals using real-time video for consultations with those less able to travel, real-time traffic monitoring and management to avoid traffic jams, and the maintenance of manufacturing assembly tools, taking millions of measurements a second to predict when parts will need replacing or rerouting.
5G has been on the horizon for a long time, and now that the West of England’s Combines Authority’s bid has been accepted, those in Bristol and Bath to discover what this brand-new, exciting technology is capable of, and what it could make possible.