O2 recently signed an agreement to provide 5G connectivity to the Smart Mobility Living Lab (SMLL) in London, where self-driving car technologies are tested and validated.
The urban testbed was designed to help build “safer, more intelligent and better joined-up transport systems,” according to a news release. Located in the Royal Borough of Greenwich and Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, it is backed by the government and is made up of experts from the transport and technology sectors, including TRL, Cisco, DG Cities, London Legacy Development Corporation, Cubic Transportation Systems and Loughborough University.
O2’s 3.4GHz 5G-ready spectrum will enable private and public organizations to test the use of both 5G vehicle to vehicle (V2V) and vehicle to road communications (V2X) on SMLL roads, which provide a real-world environment.
Many experts believe 5G is crucial to advancing unmanned mobility because of the speed it provides, its ability to connect with many devices at once and the low latency it offers. Its high capacity also allows vehicles to transmit large amounts of data, such as 4K video, to cloud-based transportation systems. This is expected to improve safety on the roads.
“At O2 we’re determined to help businesses of all sizes realize the potential of fifth-generation mobile technology,” O2 Chief Technology Officer Brendan O’Reilly said, according to the release. “We know that the transport sector is going to be one of the key beneficiaries of 5G – and that the technology has the potential to reduce traffic congestion, as well as making journeys safer and more enjoyable. That’s why we’re excited to be working with the teams at the Smart Mobility Living Lab, who are driving forward our understanding how this next generation technology will fundamentally change the fabric of the cities in which we live and work as well as creating entirely new methods of travel.”