Digital communications mobile phone provider T-Mobile has taken off with its inaugural UAV flight in a bid to showcase the role of mobile communication in the UAV sector.
T-Mobile, alongside technology partner Huawei, launched the project to demonstrate that next generation mobile communication is fast enough to control a drone in real time, and also transmit a high-resolution camera image of the drone.
Two radio cell systems in Innsbruck are the first in Austria and among the first in Europe to operate largely according to the new 5G standard.
Using the preliminary version of the final 5G standard, the network in Innsbruck delivers record-breaking transmission rates of two gigabits per second and a latency of just three milliseconds.
While drones can already follow a programmed flight route, it has not been possible so far to control drones efficiently using mobile communication
Wi-Fi signal is often used to maintain contact between pilot and drone, notwithstanding the limitations associated with the range and transmitter. According to T-Mobile, the use of 5G opens up a new dimensions in innovative drone applications, including live-saving services.
Dr. Thomas Pühringer, IKB chairman, commented: “For T-Mobile to roll out the 5G mobile network across Austria, it needs regional partners that meet the high standards required by fiber-optic networks.
“IKB has the necessary infrastructure in place here in Innsbruck and can support mobile video streaming, HD streaming, and many other data-intensive applications. We have a 640-kilometer-long, high-performance optical fiber network that enables us to offer lightning-fast surfing, full-HD TV, and the transportation of high data volumes with zero loss of speed.”
Erich Manzer, vice general manager of Huawei Austria, added: “Huawei has been investing the lion’s share of its research capacities in developing 5G technology for many years now. Today, we are at the forefront of the field and are delighted to showcase ourselves as 5G pioneers together with T-Mobile.”
“5G supports significantly higher speeds than 4G, thus opening up brand-new opportunities as we move towards a super-networked world.”