Finland's first 5G test network 5GTN expands in Oulu. 5G development environment of VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland, the University of Oulu and the Centria Polytechnic will be used especially for vertical business use. There is already a large number of Finnish companies with whom 5G technology has been developed and will be tested in several application areas. The first new solutions are targeting for field trials already this year.
Together with corporate partners, VTT, the University of Oulu and the Centria Polytechnic will take their 5G test environment to a new stage. In the 5GTN+ project mostly funded by Tekes, future technology is applied to field testing even before commercial networks emerge. Thus, the opportunities offered by 5G technology will be utilized as early as possible. Companies have the opportunity to experiment with technology in their own application areas.
Boost to product development
5GTN+ project strengthens the position of Finnish industry as a developer of new 5G technologies and applications. The project focuses on seeking clear business benefits for partner companies.
"The 5G test environment supports corporate product development. Its benefits are reflected, for example, in high-speed and reliable connections, short delays, energy savings and connectivity," says Project Manager Atso Hekkala from VTT.
"We provide the test network and related skills for everyone to use. We are also welcoming companies outside the project who are interested in taking advantage of new technology in their business among the first", says Project Manager Olli Liinamaa from the University of Oulu.
Support for assisted living and TV broadcasting
One application area chosen for the project is the enhancement of assisted living and care services with sensors and 5G technology.
"We are developing our business to more comprehensively to take into account elderly people with memory disorder or other health problems. The 5G test network offers the ability to experiment with what technology is capable of. At the same time, we can transmit our own needs to service developers," explains Timo Kaukonen, Managing Director of Caritas Services Oy.
Another 5G test network exploiter is Finnish Broadcasting Company Yle, whose primary objective is to investigate whether 5G networks and technologies can replace existing terrestrial TV and radio broadcasting technologies. Yle has already studied the possibilities of LTE Broadcasting and eMBMS and wants to move to field testing.
"At the same time, we want to find out how 5G is suitable for different types of production requiring high capacity, short delay, scalability for multi-size events, and flexibility for availability of solutions," says Olli Sipilä, responsible for Yle's broadcast technologies.
Additional partners of the project are Bittium, Caritas, Elisa, Eltel Networks, Esju, EXFO, Finnish Communications Regulatory Authority, Haltian, Hartela, Indalgo, Jutel, Kaltiot, Keysight, MediaTek, Nokia, PehuTec, Polar, Sarokal, Verkotan, Yle and the City of Oulu and Oulu University of Applied Sciences. The project will continue to involve new partners and test network users.
5G's three spread-heads:
• Broadband offering multiple gigabit per second for data transfer.
• A massive amount of communicating devices, the Internet-of-Things (IOT).
• Critical communications requiring highly reliable and low-latency connections.