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5G Future City comes to life at Collision 2019

Rogers showcased the possibilities of next-generation networks at Collision 2019


This year at Collision, Rogers demonstrated the 5G Future City, a vision of how our urban experience will be transformed with the advent of next-generation networks that deliver ultra-low latency, lightning-fast data speeds and massive capacity. Through a series of interactive demos provided by Ericsson, Rogers network partner for 5G, visitors at the booth experienced first-hand how 5G technologies will change the way we plan and build our cities, as well as how we live and work in them.

A man smiling and wearing a VR headsetPublic safety is about to get safer

One of the exhibits demonstrated how 5G can improve the safety of citizens and first responders in dangerous situations like house fires. A proof-of-concept augmented reality (AR) headset for firefighters uses a thermal camera and machine vision techniques to locate the thermal outline of people and objects, then display them as an overlay on the firefighter’s visor. This AR tech allows firefighters and other emergency workers to navigate more easily and save more lives. 5G network capabilities allow the high-res video captured by the goggles camera to be streamed to an incident commander or fire hall, enabling a more coordinated and effective rescue effort.

Two men conversing and using a tabletCity building can become more collaborative

Another exhibit showed how 5G networking and edge computing can combine with AR to create “mixed reality” experiences that transform urban planning. The demo consists of an urban planning application that drops ultra-realistic 3D renderings of new buildings into an existing cityscape, so that planners and developers can assess their potential impact on vehicle and pedestrian traffic, wind patterns, streetscape aesthetics and more. It suggests a future where we will plan and develop neighbourhoods more thoughtfully and collaboratively.

A man playing a "strike-a-light" game using a VR headsetLow latency higher entertainment

5G will enable other kinds of immersive experiences, as a “strike-a-light” game demonstrated. Players wore blackout googles that fed video from a camera to an encoder, then across the network to a decoder to which the googles were connected. As the latency of the video stream switched from simulated 5G to 4G to 3G, players experienced first-hand the significant differences in response times across these types of network. The immersive customer and fan experiences of the future will rely on ultra-low latency, as will innovations like autonomous vehicles and industrial robotics. 

Two men conversing Overcrowded hospitals can be treated with 5G

Virtually every sector has the potential to be transformed by 5G, as the Rogers booth at Collision made clear. A robotic “tilt table” controlled by a gaming console demonstrated the extraordinary responsiveness of 5G network and allowed users to compare it to the same experience of controlling the device on an LTE connection. The low latency and high bandwidth of 5G, applied to healthcare, will enable solutions like remote diagnostics and, eventually, remote surgery. Not to mention fewer patients in hospitals, lower healthcare costs and higher quality care.

The key takeaway from all these exciting demos of the power of 5G? What’s impossible today won’t be tomorrow.