Five things to watch December 21

Five things to watch December 21: Commsworld wins £5.8m Smartcity contract, Dialog Axiata chooses Spirent 5G core network testing solution and AccelerComm joins the O-RAN Alliance

21 December 2020 | Natalie Bannerman

Cover

Capacity shares 5 key stories from around the world making headlines today!

BT leads commercial drone consortium

UK incumbent, BT has formed a consortium to deliver a series of industry use cases across the UK’s first commercial drone corridor.

BT,  along with Altitude Angel and a number of UK tech start-ups, have been selected by UK Research and Innovation to deliver what it calls Project XCelerate – a project, which will establish the UK’s first commercial drone corridor in open and unrestricted airspace, located south of Reading, Berkshire.

The project will carry out its first flight trials in summer 2021, along the 8km corridor to demonstrate how drones can operate safely in the same airspace as manned aviation.

In addition, the consortium will demonstrate key industry use cases across healthcare, emergency services and infrastructure to show how drone deliveries and inspection can benefit the local people and economy.

 “As drone numbers continue to rise, there is an urgent need to safely integrate commercial drones into global airspace alongside manned aviation. In showing how drones can deliver improved, potentially life-saving services to the public, we’re aiming to accelerate the adoption of fully automated drones in unrestricted UK airspace in a safe and responsible way,” said Gerry McQuade, CEO of BT’s Enterprise unit.

“From improved mobility, connectivity, healthcare and manufacturing output, to reduced road congestion and pollution, automated drone technology will transform the quality of our lives. BT’s role in the consortium is to bring world-leading drone expertise together and to provide the secure and resilient mobile network connectivity, as well as our drone detection services. The power of EE’s 4G and 5G networks will ensure commercial drones remain connected for greater situational awareness, accurate positioning and to avoid collisions – ensuring that they can be operated safely and responsibly across UK skies.”

Commsworld awarded £5.8m Glasgow Smartcity contract

UK independent network provider Commsworld has won a £5.8 million contract with Glasgow City Council to help deliver its Smartcity objectives.

“We are delighted that Glasgow City Council has put its faith in Commsworld and the high-quality service which we provide. Together with our digital partner CGI we look forward to delivering a state of the art, world-class digital network for Glasgow, a network that can move it a step closer to becoming a global Smart City,” said Ricky Nicol, chief executive of Commsworld.

Specifically, Commsworld will install, manage and support a brand new robust, scalable and flexible full fibre network to support the delivery of CCTV and Traffic Control services across the city.

The new network will replace with Glasgow City Council’s ageing legacy networks,  and support leading-edge Internet of Things (IoT) technologies and 5G network capabilities across the city.

“Working closely with Commsworld, we are firmly committed to enabling a CCTV and traffic control system that makes Glasgow’s road network more efficient, while at the same time bringing quality job opportunities to our city,” added Councillor Angus Millar, chair of the Digital Glasgow Board.

AccelerComm joins the O-RAN Alliance

AccelerComm has joined The O-RAN Alliance, an industry association that aims to re-shape mobile networks to be more intelligent, open, virtualised and fully interoperable.

AccelerComm will contribute to the technical development of O-RAN standards, bringing its channel coding experience to reduce latency and increase spectrum efficiency for Open 5G Networks.

AccelerComm’s technology builds on the successful roll out of 5G networks going on worldwide, enabling the next-gen of use cases requiring ultra-reliable, low latency communications, such as gaming or VR, industrial IoT, autonomous vehicles and drone control.

“Delivering ultra-reliable low-latency communications (URLLC) is critical to the success of 5G, with a recent report from Rethink Research showing that 69% of mobile operators surveyed see it as ‘Very Important’ to new 5G revenues and enterprise return on investment,” said Robert Barnes, VP Sales & Marketing AccelerComm.

“We are delighted to have joined The O-RAN ALLIANCE in order to help support their mission through reducing latency and increasing efficiency in 5G networks being deployed around the globe.”

US Plan selects Connected2Fiber to plan Midwest fibre builds

Connected2Fiber confirms that US Signal, a Midwest data centre provider is using the Connected World platform to grow its 14,500+ mile network throughout the Midwest and transform its customer experience.

"As a rapidly growing solutions provider with our own robust, secure fiber network at the core of our business, it was critically important for US Signal's ongoing success to gain a centralized view of our total addressable market in order to become even more efficient in our go-to-market operations," stated Amanda Regnerus, executive vice president of business development at US Signal.

"Partnering with Connected2Fiber has provided this and much more - transforming the way we plan for customer success while simultaneously helping us maximize our return on investment for each network build."

US Signal uses Connected2Fiber's comprehensive, location-based insight as the basis for new network builds and identification of new potential partnerships. 

In addition, US Signal also participates in the wholesale ecosystem within The Connected World by automatically distributing their building lists to trusted partners using the platform. 

"Through The Connected World platform, US Signal is taking that client support to the next level and planning economically sound, data-supported fibre builds - ultimately providing more connectivity and critical data centre solutions to America's Heartland," added Steve Leavitt, vice president of sales at Connected2Fiber. 

Dialog Axiata chooses Spirent 5G core network testing solution

Spirent Communications has been selected to deliver its 5G core network testing solution Spirent Landslide to Dialog Axiata.

The news follows Dialog Axiata’s completion of its 5G mobile service, integrating 5G network infrastructure with 5G devices, and will use Spirent Landslide for its 5G core network testing to assure performance of the new services.

“We are pleased to work with Spirent as a collaborator in leading the journey towards the successful deployment and rollout of 5G in Sri Lanka,” said Pradeep De Almeida, group chief technology officer of Dialog Axiata.

“As the front runner, Spirent’s industry-leading capabilities in 5G core network testing have been instrumental in the faster rollout of 5G technology and unlocking new and seamless end-user experiences.”

Spirent Landslide emulates 5G devices and network functions to validate new 5G mobile and core nodes, ensuring readiness to deliver high-quality 5G services.

In addition, Dialog Axiata as also deployed various other Spirent solutions, including TestCenter and Avalanche, while Spirent CloudSure will provide insights NFV and cloud infrastructure performance.

“We are delighted to be collaborating with Dialog Axiata to help them safely accelerate time to market and assure that their 5G network delivers the flawless experiences that customers expect,” said Peter Tan, Spirent’s vice president of sales for the APAC region.