O2 has penned an agreement that will see it bring 5G technology to self-driving vehicle testing in London. The mobile network provider will use its 3.4GHz 5G-ready spectrum to help the Smart Mobility Living Lab to road test vehicles in a real-world environment.
Working from Greenwich and the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in Stratford, the lab is comprised of experts from TRL, DG Cities, Cisco, and Loughborough University. Those involved claim it is the ‘most advanced driverless testbed in the world’.
According to O2’s own research, a 5G road management system could reduce the time drivers spend in traffic by 10 per cent, save the economy £880m a year, and reduce CO2 emissions by 370,000 metric tonnes a year.
“At O2 we’re determined to help businesses of all sizes access the potential of 5G mobile technology,” said Brendan O’Reilly, chief technology officer at O2. “We know that by powering the transport sector we can make a real difference to consumers by reducing traffic congestion, making journeys safer and faster.
“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 ways to travel.”
Earlier this year, O2 entered into a similar agreement with the AutoAir 5G project, making it the provider of 5G connectivity for self-driving vehicle testing at the Millbrook Proving Ground in Bedfordshire. It followed this up a couple of months later by inking a deal with the European Space Agency to support a connected and autonomous vehicle project dubbed ‘Project Darwin’.