Vodafone has become the first provider to live test 5G on a large scale in Birmingham, after rolling it out at New Street station. The pilot of this mobile technology at the station is part of ongoing tests across the UK into the effectiveness of 5G.
Tests were carried out on April 4th, with Andy Street, mayor of the West Midlands, being the first to use the 5G router, before other passengers were invited to do the same. After the event, the mayor said: “I am delighted that Vodafone has brought 5G to Birmingham; and that New Street is the UK’s first 5G-enabled rail station. When I was managing director at John Lewis, we saw online shopping transform the retail industry. I believe the West Midlands 5G project will enable our businesses, hospitals, public transport and universities to explore new services and stay ahead of their competition.”
Vodafone plans to provide 5G access to 19 towns and cities in the UK by the end of the year. They will include Bournemouth, Stoke-on-Trent and Wolverhampton. Anne Sheehan, director of Vodafone Business, has predicted that businesses, residents and visitors will benefit from the rollout of 5G, even at busy locations, such as train stations and airports. She added it will help in the development of connected cities and smart transport solutions, offering new experiences to be brought to the masses. Businesses are especially likely to put 5G to good use, utilising it to implement emerging technologies as varied as artificial intelligence (AI), the Internet of Things (IoT) and robotics.