Covering the latest topics in 5G acceleration, information delivery and consumption in our physical, digital and virtual worlds, through to next generation technology to support climate action. This year’s focus evolved far from the advancements of 5G, to how we really utilise the improvements over 3G and 4G and deliver real benefits to users, communities, and society.

Faster speed, lower latency, capacity to handle more devices and increased reliability all mean that 5G can claim its place as a game changer for communications.  After attending MWC, Ben Webb, our Head of Industrial, shares a number of key takeouts from the event. 

5G and the future of farming

5G still underpins precision farming by using real-time data and analytics to make informed decisions. Combined with high-speed connectivity to both autonomous vehicles and drones, this technology allows farmers to optimise crop yield, reduce waste and improve efficiency.

Through the use of sensors, Internet of Things (IoT) devices and data analytics, 5G continues to enable the use of smart irrigation systems and tracking and monitoring the health and behaviour in livestock; allowing farmers to act early to prevent illness or disease, conserve water, reduce costs and improve yields to keep food on our tables.

Logistics and supply chain optimisation

By utilising the expanding 5G network, the connectivity options with real time tracking enables logistics companies to monitor the location or condition of goods in transit, allowing for prevention in delays or management. It is also enabling greater accuracy in inventory levels to adhere to customer demand and provides a mechanism to optimise shipping schedules.

The use of self-driving trucks, autonomous warehouse vehicles, drones and robots are now very much at the heart of the ‘efficient, logistics hub’ all utilising the speed and low latency benefits of using a 5G network.
Through using sensors and data analytics, predictive maintenance offers an enhanced user experience, reducing downtime, improving user safety and reducing waste.

OpenRAN (Open Radio Access Networks)

A plethora of OpenRAN technology ready devices and infrastructure were on show throughout the conference. OpenRAN is purposely designed to allow interoperability between vendors to reduce complexity, mix and match components to reduce costs, increase flexibility and promote future innovation, allowing an ability to deploy new features and services quickly and easily. With a rise in OpenRAN devices, the future of an open network for device or system security is certainly a hot topic and a growing area for discussion.

Healthcare, Artificial Intelligence (AI) and 5G

Utilising 5G networks, remote patient monitoring, care or consultation are all now mainstream activities, but introducing the use of sensors or IoT devices that collect data in real time, provides an enhanced experience and accuracy and timeliness of patient data, enabling healthcare providers to now intervene faster when necessary.

Augmented reality and smart technologies

Continuing advances in augmented reality (AR) technologies that use the power of 5G allow for greater accuracy to overlay virtual information onto real time events. Being very powerful for training, planning and education across many applications, the industry advancements for this technology span a breadth of sectors.

Smart technology and smart buildings of the future will continue to develop their use or AR systems, integrated sensors and data analytics to support climate action and tackle sustainability, i.e. through reducing the usage of energy, water and emissions.

The combined technology of 5G and AI is also transforming a number of industries by enabling faster and more accurate diagnosis, personalisation, and more efficient resource allocation.

If you want to learn more about how KD can support you with your product or service using our knowledge and experience working with clients from defence and security, environment and energy, communications and networking; IoT and connected devices, robotics and automation and science and testing, please do get in touch.