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Closed Funding Competitions

Don't miss a chance to fund your 5G project

Closed Competitions

Future RAN Competition (FRANC)

£30m to put UK at the cutting edge of developing new tech for 5G mobile networks
Scheme is a key part of government’s 5G Diversification Strategy
Comes as ex-Fujitsu chair Simon Blagden is named as lead for Diversification Advisory Council

To receive a share of the £30 million, tech and telecoms innovators are encouraged to submit proposals for projects that will help to fast-track the availability of viable Open RAN products and suppliers and create a stronger case for government and business investment in the technology.

Proposals could include exploring issues around power efficiency, the management of radio wave ‘spectrum’ resource, the availability of advanced software platforms, systems integration and security.

More on about the FRANC competition

Fibre in Water

Fibre in Water (FiW) is an open competition, run by DCMS from HM Treasury’s Shared Outcomes Fund and supported by DEFRA, BEIS and Cabinet Office. It will allocate up to £4 million of R&D funding to projects that develop and build a pilot to facilitate delivery of advanced broadband and mobile services via drinking water mains.

More on about the Fibre in Water Competition 

Digital Connectivity Infrastructure Accelerator (DCIA)

This £4 million competition will explore ways to make it simpler and quicker for mobile companies to use publicly-owned buildings and curbside infrastructure - such as CCTV poles and traffic signals - to host 5G radio equipment.

Street furniture and buildings can be used to host 5G network equipment more cheaply, quickly and with less visual impact compared with traditional phone masts. However, network operators often find it difficult to acquire the information needed to verify that a structure is suitable, such as its location, physical dimensions, proximity to the street or access to a power source.

More on about the DCIA Compeition

5G Enabled Road & Rail Competition

West Midlands 5G (WM5G) will work in partnership with the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) and the West Midlands Combined Authority (WMCA). Together they will invest up to £2.5 million in innovation projects that develop a new service or product. These must improve road and rail operational efficiency, provide better-connected transport or improve traveller experience. Innovate UK, part of UK Research and Innovation, will manage the competition process.

Competition closed on 15th May 2020. 

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Industrial 5G Testbeds & Trials: Manufacturing and Logistics Sectors Projects

The aim of these projects is to demonstrate the value of 5G, beyond enhanced mobile broadband, by targeting industrial uses that can help deliver efficiency, productivity, and other benefits in the UK economy, and help the UK lead the development of enterprise applications for 5G.

Applications are open until 10 October 2019. 

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Rural Connected Communities Project

Up to 10 funded projects will trial innovative use cases and technical solutions to build the business case for investment in rural connectivity and explore the capabilities of 5G to benefit rural communities. They will also help demonstrate demand from a variety of economic sectors and rural communities for 5G technologies.

Applications are open until 25 October 2019.

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Horizon 2020

The third phase of the 5G Public Private Partnership (5G PPP) targets technology validation in a system context and for multiple use cases, with performances well beyond those of early 5G trials ongoing or planned by private actors with "non standalone" 5G implementations. A series of opportunities are available with a total budget of EU182M across four core topics:

  • Smart connectivity beyond 5G
  • 5G innovations for verticals with third party services
  • 5G core technologies innovation
  • 5G for Connected and Autonomous Mobility

Applications for each of these are either open or about to open.

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5G Infotainment Services for Transport Environments

The aim of this competition is to develop new and novel applications and services that can be ready for 5G, in collaboration with South Korean partners.  The successful UK applicant is required to test solutions in a real-life environment (rather than a lab environment). The test environment is provided by South Korean partners and the technical architecture provided is a hybrid 4G/5G network, but any solution should be designed for a 5G future.

5G RailNext were announced in July 2019 as the winners of this funding. 5G RailNext is a private and public sector consortium led by Cisco and consisting of British SMEs Soluis and Ampletime as well as the University of Strathclyde and Glasgow City Council.

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5G Create Competition

DCMS have launched a £30 million open competition to develop new uses for 5G in a variety of industries. Briefing events are taking place around the country.

An open competition aiming to attract bids from a variety of industries where the UK has a competitive advantage, encouraging dynamic business models and opening up new opportunities and markets.

More details

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