Using the current experiences of residents and understanding their hopes and expectations of digital connectivity, the project will test the delivery of connectivity to place rural communities as a leader in technological advances. With the overall aim to develop a scalable model that can be rolled out nationally, whilst contributing to the understanding of how 5G can be used to address rural challenges.
Addressing four use cases, which are relevant and integral to North Yorkshire and wider rural areas it will highlight how 5G can:
- Boost tourism and other rural businesses to develop a growth economy
- Enhance environmental monitoring supporting relief agencies and council led teams
- Support mission critical services delivery and
- Improve residents’ wellbeing and mental health.
In order to achieve this, the project will use newly available software technology and the spectrum – 1.8 to 4.2Ghz – to develop the network. Delivered using small items of radio equipment distributed across the network and controlled by locally installed software, it will provide the end user with ultrafast connections enabling broadband and data telephony in areas of current ‘not spots’.
A further element of the project will be to enable connectivity with a conventional mobile signal by working with MNOs allowing them to roam onto the network.
Led by Quickline Communications, the consortium includes North Yorkshire County Council; the universities of York and Lancaster – Management School and School of Computing and Computer Science – aql ltd, Cybermoor 5G services, Flo-culture, Wireless coverage and Safenetics. The consortium partners combines a wide range of experience and expertise relevant to the design and delivery of high-speed connectivity to rural communities.