5G connectivity boost for ten regions

Ten UK regions are set to receive a share of £36 million aimed at expediting innovation driven by 5G technology.

Local areas across the UK will be able to boost digital connectivity and adopt advanced wireless technologies, such as smart systems to reduce congestion and portable 5G networks to enable super-fast live broadcast from remote locations.

Ten 5G Innovation Regions (5GIRs) will use the funding to drive the development and adoption of 5G and other advanced wireless technologies, so that communities in towns, cities and rural areas take full advantage of the benefits advanced wireless connectivity and digital technologies can provide and attract commercial investment to grow the economy.

Glasgow City Region will eceive over £3 million to deliver a health and social care focused project that will use advanced wireless technology, such as the Internet of Things (IoT) and smart city applications, to improve public services. The project will focus on on monitoring and maintaining assets, creating environmentally friendly social housing, and improving the monitoring of health and social care services.

Greater Manchester Combined Authority will receive over £3 million. Some of this funding will be used to 5G-enable hundreds of air source heat pumps across social housing.

The 5G Innovation Regions programme is designed to boost innovation in sectors such as advanced manufacturing, transport, agriculture, creative industries, and public services, helping to create better connected places across the UK. The programme is a commitment from the government’s Wireless Infrastructure Strategy.

Minister of data and digital Infrastructure Sir John Whittingdale said: "We’re channelling millions into local areas to unlock the potential of cutting-edge 5G wireless and digital technologies which will reshape our public services, drive economic growth and boost innovation. This new fund will give local areas from across the country the opportunity to be at the forefront of Britain’s world-leading 5G revolution.

"For instance, by using 5G for farming and creating science parks, we’re not just helping local communities, but also encouraging new ideas all over the UK. This is more than just linking smartphones. It’s about using powerful digital connections to transform various sectors in the economy and the public sector throughout the entire country.

UK Government minister for Scotland, John Lamont, said: "The UK government is committed to ensuring the potential of 5G is felt across the UK and I am delighted that Glasgow City Council, North Ayrshire Council and the Borderlands Region will between them receive almost £11 million to help with this.

"Scotland has a history of being at the forefront of innovation and technology and this funding will make sure this remains the case. All the areas will use this technology to help people’s lives, Glasgow through improving the monitoring of health and social care services, North Ayrshire will accelerate the adoption of digital and wireless technologies and the Borderlands Region will help increase tourism."


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