The Digital TV Group, working with Ateme, Imaginary Pictures, Virgin Media O2 and the University of Surrey, has successfully secured Government funding to develop a solution to optimise mobile network performance in High Demand Density (HDD) environments such as music festivals, sporting events, and major public gatherings.
The 5G ONE4HDD consortium aims to design and deploy a Mobile ‘Cell on Wheels’ (CoW) equipped with Open RAN (Radio Access Network) technology, offering reliable connectivity in crowded venues.
The DTG says the technical approach involves the development of a portable cell site, capable of serving hundreds of users simultaneously. This cell site will utilise cutting-edge Open RAN technology and advanced codecs to ensure high-quality data transmission even in the busiest environments. We will also explore the provision of services such as ‘over-the-top’ (OTT) video, social media, emergency broadcasts, and standard telephony.
The £2.64 million project has received £1.47 million from the Department of Science, Innovation and Technology (DSIT) as part of its Open Network Ecosystems competition, an £88 million research and development fund for innovative connectivity to future-proof the UK mobile network.
Minister for Data and Digital Infrastructure John Whittingdale said: “Whether you’re in a busy city centre or a rural village, a fast and reliable mobile connection is vital to staying in touch, accessing services and doing business.
“In order to secure that, we need to embrace a diverse and secure range of technology that will underpin the network.
The DTG consortium brings in expert partners from across including mobile network optimisation, broadcast services, video compression and content delivery, cellular radio technologies, and cybersecurity. Consortium partners Ateme, DTG, Imaginary Pictures, Virgin Media O2, and the University of Surrey will be supported by CellXica Radios & Wavemobile and Rohde & Schwarz.
“The Digital TV Group and its 5G ONE4HDD consortium partners are delighted to have been selected by DSIT as part of the Open Network Ecosystems competition,” DTG CTO Alex Buchan said. “We believe it is vital that content continues to delight the viewer, wherever they are and whenever they are watching. The 5G ONE4HDD project will address the crucial challenge of delivering reliable mobile connectivity in crowded settings, thereby enhancing user experience and fostering technological innovation in the UK.”
The project also prioritises cybersecurity, with measures managed by the University of Surrey to ensure robust protection against potential threats. It means our solution will not only enhance mobile network performance but also ensure user data privacy and security.