UK’s 5G landscape is “active and growing rapidly”, says Digital Catapult

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Digital Catapult has published what it claims is the UK’s first 5G landscape report and online reference tool, which highlights what it describes as a “lively, active and growing” 5G ecosystem in the UK. 

Commissioned by Innovate UK, the UK Government’s innovation agency, the report provides a first of its kind snapshot and barometer to help UK Government and industry assess 5G activity and deliver on the UK’s 5G Strategy.

The hope is that policy makers will be better positioned to progress the UK’s advancement in 5G, and realise the Government’s goal to begin rolling out commercial deployments of the network across the country by 2019.

With the prediction that 5G will enable $12.3trillion of global economic output by 2035, Digital Catapult’s report highlights that the UK has huge potential, with a wide range of actors in the 5G space. These include private and public sector organisations, academics and researchers, and start-up and emerging network innovators.

According to Digital Catapult, these are all supporting growth in the field, with testbeds and trials already taking place. There are currently 39 academic institutions, 29 local authorities and 57 companies undertaking almost 200 5G related activities in the UK.

The report also demonstrates an increasing number of 5G activities in the UK, with projects kicking off in four crucial areas of the economy: healthcare, transport, immersive technologies and manufacturing. These projects, activities and innovations indicate that the UK 5G ecosystem is gaining momentum. It is also highly interconnected – within the UK and with universities and companies across the world. This strong network has entered the UK into the worldwide 5G scene, meaning it’s going toe-to-toe with other leading countries’ efforts, adds Digital Catapult.

Dritan Kaleshi, 5G Lead Technologist, Digital Catapult, says: "The vision of 5G is much wider than an evolution of mobile broadband networks. This research shows that there are huge opportunities for 5G to unlock major economic and societal benefits in the UK. With so much 5G activity, there is an excellent backdrop for innovative start-ups and scale-ups to explore how 5G can be utilised and start to experiment in building the products, services and immersive experiences of the future.”

“As the first comprehensive analysis of the UK’s 5G ecosystem, this report provides an invaluable resource, enabling innovators and policy makers to track the activities which are building UK 5G capability and providing helpful pointers to how UK companies can become world leaders in the future infrastructure,” adds Jeremy Silver, CEO Digital Catapult.

You can explore the report and read more about the findings here.

Digital Catapult has also built an online directory of 5G activities in the UK, which will be available from June 15, 2018.