Helping to make 5G a reality

London Met Professor organises conference to support the development of 5G mobile technology.

Date: 7 February 2017

Professor Bal Virdee, Professor of Microwave Communications and Director of the Centre for Communications Technology & Mathematics in the School of Computing and Digital Media, organised and hosted a one-day conference on ‘Towards 5G Mobile Technology – Vision to Reality’, exploring the next generation of mobile networking.

Professor Virdee, who is also a member of the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET), said: “Mobile data use is doubling each year worldwide and the exponential growth in traffic will continue for the foreseeable future. This means that by 2020, the average mobile user could be downloading a whopping 1 terabyte of data annually, which is the equivalent of accessing more than 1,000 feature-length films.”

To address this growth in data traffic, mobile phone operators have introduced a number of adaptions to the current 4G network but these solutions are unlikely to withstand the next four to six years.

“We need a new technology that can offer 100 times the data capacity of 4G networks, particularly as we enter the era of the Internet-of-Things and machine-to-machine communication. The technology that will enable this is 5G but its development will rely on an unprecedented level of collaboration,” explained Professor Virdee.

“The conference was organised as a way of tackling the need for cross-sector collaboration and to bring together people who are involved with the development of 5G technology from industry and academia, as well as policy makers and regulators.”

The conference, held at the IET in late January, included a number of sessions on the latest innovations and challenges in 5G technology, as well as offering attendees the opportunity to network with leading industry and academic experts.

A diverse range of topics were discussed, including ‘What is 5G and when is it coming’, ‘Security in an interconnected world’ and ‘An internet of skills, where 5G meets AI, robotics and the Tactile Internet’.

The event was chaired by Dr Mike Short CBE, Vice President of Telefonica Europe, and presentations from the conference will soon be available on the Institution of Engineering and Technology website.

Image: Dr Deeph Chana, Dr Joe Butler, Dr Reiner Hoppe, Dr Kafil Ahmed, Dr Mark Barrett, Professor Bal Virdee, Dr Welong He, Professor Mark Beach, Dr Maziar Nekovee, Professor Andy Sutton