Verizon has five 5G labs across five different cities in which they invite companies to come and test out some imaginative ideas for enterprise and consumer use cases for 5G.
Each of the five labs boasts a different 5G case use focus, New York is financial tech and publishing, Silicon Valley works with startup companies, Los Angeles focuses on media and entertainment. Washington D.C. focuses on government and non-profit and lastly Boston reviews robotics and pharma. Verizon has plans to bring in another lab location outside of the U.S. soon.
The Verizon labs have been hosting a “Built on 5G Challenge” contest and recently named 10 finalists all fighting for the top prize of $1 million to bring their innovative idea to fruition. Second place will win $500,000 and third place will be awarded $250,000. The winners will be announced January 7-10 at CES 2020 in Las Vegas.
Toby Redshaw, Verizon SVP of enterprise innovation and 5G, has been in charge of the 5G Labs since they started two years ago. Redshaw said 5G is going to be disruptive to enterprise chief information officers (CIOs) who “have been stuck buying two-point solutions.” With the low latency and high-bandwidth of 5G, CIOs will have access to innovative solutions.
One of this year’s Verizon 5G Challenge finalists, Soul Machines, creates an online, animated human that acts as a customer service representative. Instead of customers feeling like they’re talking to a robot or pre-recorded voice, they’ll be able to use a video app that makes them feel like they’re talking to a real person, when actually aren’t.
As someone who oversees this exciting new challenge, Redshaw gets to check out a lot of exciting and innovative ideas for 5G and seems particularly excited over what video applications 5G will enable. For example, Medivis, a medical company, is utilizing 5G to convert 2-D patient CT Scans and MRIs into 3D holographic renderings in order to precisely dissect around and remove tumors that could be cancerous. Currently, doctors use a 2D image during surgery and use their own interpretation of how to operate, but 5G will be able to bring a 3D holographic image to life! The surgeon can view the rendering through glasses on top of the surgical site. Not only will this keep the doctor from constantly having to turn around to view the 2D image, but it will give more precision.
Verizon also recently announced that they installed its 5G Ultra-Highband network in Corning’s fiber optic cable manufacturing factory in Hickory, NC. Corning has plans to use Verizon’s 5G network to test how 5G can better improve functions like factory automation and quality assurance in one of the biggest fiber optic cable facilities in the world.
Source: Fierce Wireless