A new industry group led by Nokia Bell Labs is spearheading WIVE, short for “WIreless for VErticals,” to make it possible for new types of industries to gain competitive advantage from the latest wireless technologies, namely 5G.
The project is co-funded by the Finnish Funding Agency for Innovation (Tekes) and involves several industry, research institute and academic partners such as Nokia, Teleste, Telia, ABB, Cargotec Kalmar, Finnish Broadcasting Company, Digita, regulator FICORA and key Finnish universities as well as VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland.
Slated to run for two years, the WIVE project will focus on the needs of the following vertical sectors:
- Media and entertainment
- Machine-type connectivity for application areas, including Ultra Reliable Low Latency Communications (URLLC) serving sectors like smart grids and remotely controlled machines
- Massive Machine Type Connectivity (mMTC) allowing a high number of devices to be connected with limited cost and energy consumption
WIVE aims to develop concepts and enable technologies, as well as to test and experiment with new vertical services offered by 5G, especially for URLLC, mMTC and media content delivery, according to a press release.
"Industry collaboration is essential in fostering innovation around 5G, and for enabling different industries to take full advantage of the faster connections that 5G promises," said the industrial coordinator of the project, Mikko Uusitalo, head of wireless advanced technologies research at Nokia, in the release. "Nokia Bell Labs has a strong focus on ultra-reliable, low latency communications targeting new wireless communication systems for verticals, and the WIVE project provides us with greater insight into the requirements and opportunities for experimentation to test our solutions."
Part of WIVE is focusing on users and identifying business opportunities for different verticals. 5G promises to enable service concepts and business cases across industries, paving the way for new business models and markets to emerge. WIVE said it takes content consumption patterns and routines among end-users into account when exploring new business opportunities and scenarios for 5G.
Janne Koistinen, director of Telia 5G program in Finland, said deep understanding of the needs of different verticals and the variety of 5G user contexts is in the core of Telia’s business. “We are looking at evolving media consumption patterns and developing revolutionary spectator experiences, for example at Telia 5G Arena in Helsinki and as part of our agreement for Finnish Ice Hockey League media rights,” Koistinen said. “Machine-type connectivity and ultra-reliable communications are just as crucial for building smarter traffic, manufacturing solutions and other digitalization initiatives, which are topical for our B2B customers.”
Nokia President and CEO Rajeev Suri talked about the fourth industrial revolution in his keynote at Mobile World Congress Americas in San Francisco last week, and Hossein Moiin, technology adviser to Nokia and its former CTO, said the industry needs to do more in order to really take advantage of some of the real-time capabilities of 5G and reach out to other industries to help them solve some of the challenges.
By way of example, he noted the natural disasters that have been occurring in the U.S., where 5G could really help, "but we're not reaching out," to governments and energy companies, he said. Besides communications, there are other networks like healthcare, transportation, energy and production, and when these networks are fused together, that's where the real benefits will emerge for everyone.