A dialogue session was organised by the newspaper La Vanguardia on 23 May, with various experts from the ICT sector discussing the roll-out of 5G technology in Barcelona and how it will drive the digital transformation in all sorts or spheres: from education to consumption, tourism, communication and even security.
The 5G Catalunya project is headed by Cellnex Telecom, Grup Más Móvil, the phone company Parlem Telecom, Aumenta Solutions, Atos, the consultancy firm Nae, Lenovo, Nearby Computing and Red.es. Seven cases which make use of the 5G Catalunya project will be carried out in collaboration with different organisations, both private and public, notably Barcelona City Council, Mobile World Capital Barcelona, Fira de Barcelona, the i2cat research and development centre, the tech manufacturer Intel and the IESE business school.
The dialogue session brought together various representatives from some the organisations collaborating on the 5G Catalunya project, including the manager for innovation and the digital transition at Barcelona City Council, Marta Continente; the director of technology at Aumenta Solutions, Javier Campos; the technical and innovation director of Beteve, Jordi Colom; the head of operations at Parlem Telecom, Manolo Ginart, and the leader of the Cellnex Telecom project, Ana Varela, who acted as the host for the session along with the deputy general manager of Godó Strategies, Pablo de Porcioles.
The manager for innovation and digital transition, Marta Continente, underlined the importance of this project for the city, noting it would be “impossible without public-private collaboration”. “Technologies come in waves and we have to catch this one, as Barcelona wants to be a pioneer. If it achieves this, it will continue to be a competitive city which attracts talent and companies and enables local businesses to make the most of this virtuous cycle of digitalisation”, observed the municipal manager, and “if we go further with digitalisation, Barcelona will offer more quality public services”.
Notable complex cases of the use of 5G to be developed in collaboration with Barcelona City Council, according to Continente, include “emergency solutions and security”, which will be trialled in the 22@ technology district to “monitor public space” by combining 5G with image capture and analysis.
One of the biggest advantages of the roll-out of 5G technology will be much greater speed, improving connectivity for multiple devices, reducing latency in response times to between one and five milliseconds, in others words some 400 times quicker than the blink of an eye.
This will allow for applications in other sectors such as education, tourism, security, communication and consumption. Notable examples include holographic solutions for remote education, self-driving vehicles, mobile TV broadcasts and relaying sound and images to media control centres etc.