Dundee selected as home city for new 5G innovation hub

Dundee has been chosen as the location for a new Scotland 5G Centre innovation hub, part of a multi-million-pound national network.

The hub will ensure that fifth-generation mobile technologies help drive growth and increase opportunities for employment and investment in the city and the wider Tay Cities region.

The launch is part of the Scottish Government-backed S5GConnect programme to deliver a network of hubs to drive economic growth across the country. The Dundee hub will work with regional businesses and provide access to a 5G development platform, triggering additional investment.

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Experts from the Scotland 5G Centre will lead work in the hub in collaboration with Abertay University’s Emergent Technology Centre and the InGAME research and development centre, with the physical site location due to be confirmed in the coming weeks.

The physical site location in Dundee, above, is due to be confirmed in the coming weeks, with the S5GC innovation hub operational from May.

The hub will offer collaboration and partnerships to bring together industry, academia and government bodies, creating opportunities for businesses of all sizes.

5G is already available in the form of high-speed mobile data connections to users of some networks in a limited number of towns and cities.

More widely, it is expected to open up opportunities to design products and services incorporating technologies such as immersive, interactive, artificial intelligence (AI), virtual reality, automation and the internet of things (IoT). The latter, in particular, allows for the deployment of sensor-based systems and products across areas such as healthcare.

Another focus area will be cyber-security. The hub will encourage the adoption of proactive cyber security practices for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) that adopt 5G technologies through collaboration with Abertay University.

A total of £2 million of funding has been ringfenced within the Tay Cities Deal to support the delivery and demonstration of 5G use cases. The Tay Cities Deal is a partnership between the UK and Scottish governments along with public and private organisations across Angus, Dundee, Fife and Perth & Kinross.

Paul Coffey, chief executive at the Scotland 5G Centre, said: “Dundee has a proud track record of partnership working with established tech networks to enable the city to flourish. The local team at the 5G innovation hub will support organisations, networks and communities to get involved in the acceleration of 5G deployment at an earlier stage.

“We will work closely with the city’s games industry to enable organisations to harness the many opportunities that 5G offers, such as truly simultaneous game play.”

Professor Gregor White, dean of the school of design and informatics, said: “Abertay has been helping to drive Dundee’s evolution as a leading UK tech hub for many years, and this 5G innovation initiative has the potential to further strengthen industries that are hugely important to the city and its future.

“The rollout of the 5G hub offers significant growth potential for Dundee’s business sector and we are keen to explore all business collaboration opportunities.”

Councillor Mark Flynn, convener of Dundee City Council’s city development committee, added: “As the nature of doing business changes and there is an inevitable increase not just in demand, but in expectation, we want to ensure that more businesses in the city can enjoy a more uniform experience, with the greater performance and improved efficiency that 5G offers.”

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