InterDigital, a mobile technology research and development company and member of 5TONIC, the first 5G research laboratory in Spain, announced that the laboratory has been recognised as a Digital Innovation Hub by the European Union (EU).
Founded originally by experts from Telefonica and the research institute IMDEA Networks, the EU’s recognition highlights the important role that 5TONIC is playing in the development and testing of next-generation 5G mobile technology networks.
Other members comprise the following eight organisations: Ericsson, Intel, CommScope, University Carlos III of Madrid, Cohere Technologies, Artesyn Embedded Technologies, Altran, and Red Hat.
5TONIC is creating a global open environment, where members from industry and academia can work together on research and innovation projects related to 5G technologies. Helping to boost technology development and drive innovative business ventures, 5TONIC promotes joint project development, discussion fora, events and conference sites in an international environment.
The EU’s Digital Innovation Hubs are one-stop-shops that provide access to the latest knowledge, expertise and technology to support businesses with piloting, testing and experimenting with digital innovations.
5TONIC has been an important research laboratory for InterDigital and the development of its 5G technologies. InterDigital completed the successful trial and evaluation of its millimeter wave (mmW) EdgeLink™ 60GHz solution and Fast-Forward 70GHz solution within 5TONIC.
The trial, which started in November 2017, proved the feasibility of 5G fronthaul upper-layer and lower-layer transport over wireless. The successful trial was a key part of a larger two-month trial integrating technology innovations from six partners in the Horizon 2020 5G-Crosshaul consortium, including InterDigital, Ericsson, Nokia, UC3M, NEC and CND.
As an early member of 5TONIC, InterDigital has continued to promote the importance of the research lab. At this year’s Mobile World Congress, it hosted a panel highlighting the importance of testbeds in the development of 5G. 5TONIC scientists also play a key role in many other 5G projects in which InterDigital is actively involved, including 5G-Crosshaul, 5G-Coral and 5G-Transformer—EU-funded projects that all focus on the development and advancement of 5G technologies.
“With 5G still in its early days, research labs like 5TONIC are imperative to the development and testing of 5G technologies, and are crucial to the development of our own technologies,” said Alan Carlton, vice president, InterDigital Europe.
“As an important collaborative partner, we are happy the lab has been recognised for its work and been given Digital Innovation Hub status. With 5G set to disrupt and transform the industry, the ability to develop and test 5G products and services with other industry players becomes even more critical as we approach the mainstream rollout of 5G.”
Digital Innovation Hubs have been established to help European businesses, regardless of size or technical expertise, grasp digital opportunities. The development of Digital Innovation Hubs is supported by Horizon 2020, the European framework programme for research and innovation.
5TONIC’s mission is to help define 5G application scenarios and provide lab capabilities to outline suitable 5G infrastructure. The laboratory will operate at least until the first 5G products are commercially viable, which is expected to happen approximately in 2020.