Ford has signed a deal with Vodafone to install a private 5G network at its electric vehicle battery workshop in Essex, in a sign of confidence in Britain’s manufacturing sector.
The carmaker’s R&D facility in Dunton will be the first automotive centre in the UK to be upgraded to a 5G network that will replace older WiFi networks on the shop floor that struggle to support the amount of data generated by a car factory.
The project has been partly funded by the UK government, which provided £2m to back a pilot trial at the facility earlier this year as part of a £65m plan for investment in 5G.
It’s good to see the potential significance of 5G within manufacturing attracting some attention.
We are looking forward to working with our partners Vodafone, VFE , TWI, HSSMI, Lancaster University, TM Forum and ATS to understand the opportunities of 5G bandwidth, security , reliability and speed on the shop floor.
Chris White - Ford (5GEM UK Lead)