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UK’s Minister for Digital Infrastructure, Matt Warman, announced a new relationship with wireless technology company Qualcomm Technologies Inc., working with the Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport (DCMS) 5G Test-beds and Trials Programme.

“Qualcomm is at the cutting-edge of wireless communications and we are delighted to be working with its technology experts as part of our efforts to seize the full potential of 5G to help the country build back better,” said Warman. “Alongside the 5G RuralDorset project and backed by our £200 million trials scheme, we will explore innovative uses for 5G millimeter wave spectrum to revolutionize the agricultural sector.”

5G RuralDorset will be working alongside the wireless technology innovator as part of its agritech trials. Qualcomm will be supplying high-frequency, 5G mmWave modules to the project in order to test their efficacy in 5G-connected robotic farming. In detail, the 5G Rural Dorset trial will be observing crop growth, tracking livestock, and measuring water pollution.

Dave Happy, Security, Spectrum and Collaboration Lead for 5G RuralDorset, said: “Qualcomm Technologies Inc., is the world’s leading wireless technology innovator. We are delighted to be working with the company to assess the capabilities of its latest Qualcomm® Snapdragon™ Platforms and 5G Modem-RF Systems during our R&D testbed in rural Dorset. “

The increased capacity offered by high frequency 5G mmWave will allow the robots to upload the huge amount of data they will be gathering in real-time. Multiple robots will be able to communicate and work in parallel which saves time and reduces the processing capabilities required by an individual robot.

“Our state-of-the-art trials aim to produce the world’s first 5G-ready agri robot and having bleeding edge technologies under the hood is a massive boost,” Happy also pointed out.

Wassim Chourbaji, SVP, Government Affairs, Qualcomm Communications S.A.R.L., commented: “5G mmWave not only brings next-level mobile experiences to users, but it can also deliver high-capacity wireless broadband access to urban, suburban, and rural settings. 5GRuralDorset will demonstrate how 5G mmWave can bring smart agriculture capabilities to remote farms.”

Chourbaji also added that the widespread use of 5G mmWave technology in the UK would mark a significant step towards bridging the current digital divide. “It is an endorsement of mmWave’s potential that alongside trials like this one in Dorset, we are already seeing strong commercial momentum for mmWave with a number of rollouts already taking place across Europe.”

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