5G Trials in Orkney
5G trials in Orkney to transform economy and island life.
14:00 25 October 2019
Orkney Islands, which are located off the coast of Scotland’s most northernly tip, are remote and exposed to various elements. This makes it difficult to build telecommunications infrastructures, which leaves the island’s population less economically attractive to commercial broadband providers.
However, the islands have been recently chosen to be part of 5GRuralFirst and is now one of the government-assisted 5G testbeds designed to identify and test the potential use cases for 5G. The project is deployed in partnership with and assistance of the local Wireless ISP Cloudnet, Cisco and researchers from the University of Strathclyde.
Dez O’Conner, Cisco’s project lead, said: “The four major operators won’t being 5G to Orkney themselves. They’re focusing on major cities and then they’ll go t town with the next largest populations.”
“They won’t build competing infrastructure on every single island with some only having population of 50.”
The project has created a frictionless WiFi network called OpenRoaming that allows users to move from one hotspot to the next using one user identity authentication.
O’Conner explained: “OpenRoaming solves the security element of Wi-Fi. To log on, you choose a provider (usually a mobile operator) that has identity for you and that you can trust and you’re logged on.”