Cities should be deliberate about partnering with businesses and forming infrastructure strategies if they are to have success with 5G rollout, speakers from early 5G testbeds said Monday at the DC5G conference in Arlington, VA.
The Smart Docklands project from Dublin, Ireland, has brought 5G to a 1.5-square-mile area in the east of the city, and with it, officials have been rolling out small cell infrastructure to help close coverage gaps. Those small cells have been installed on all manner of city infrastructure, including lampposts, trash cans and stoplights. Edward Emmanuel, Smart Docklands' project management and governance lead, said given the historic nature of the city, they have to be "really strategic" with the infrastructure they use. "We can't just drill holes into them and stick things up," he said.
Meanwhile, Salford in Greater Manchester, UK has looked to leverage its mixed-use MediaCityUK development at a 5G innovation hub, where businesses are shown how the technology can help make their operations more efficient through various accelerator programs.