5G mobile service is coming to Hamilton

It’s hard to imagine that in the year 2019, we can still complain about slow internet connection.

Just 30 years ago, the concept of a globally connected ‘web’ was basically unheard of, and dial-up internet times almost felt like they weren’t worth the headache. But now, thanks to the Centre for Integrated Transportation and Mobility (CITM) at Hamilton’s McMaster Innovation Factory, 5G networks will be launched in Hamilton.

5G is a significant upgrade in network speed and connectivity. By inputting more relay points in closer proximity, 5G networks are able to relay more information at near instantaneous speeds. They can achieve this closer proximity by placing these small 5G transmitters in more inconspicuous urban settings, such as on traffic lights, attached to park benches, and any other piece of what they call “urban furniture”.

The possibilities of this are endless, and one can only dream of how quickly their Netflix and YouTube will load their favourite videos.

The real excitement of 5G extends far past the connectivity of regular browser-based internet. An infinite zone of infinite network speed has infinite possibilities. One innovation that will be vastly improved by the 5G network is one that has been in the works at McMaster Innovation Park for a while – the driverless car.

Autonomous vehicles will be greatly improved with this new technology. The increased frequency of 5G antennas will allow for more consistent traffic monitoring and quicker relays to the car’s ‘brain’.

The CITM has expressed that although this 5G network will expedite the ability to bring autonomous vehicles to the streets, they are also extremely excited for the innovations that will come with that. Whether it be automatic deliveries, driverless taxis, decreased traffic and commuting time, the addition of 5G will make all of these dreams a reality in a much shorter time frame.

Only a small 6.6km test loop area on the Hamilton Mountain will be used to test this technology in the short term, but it is expected that by 2026, half of Canada will be connected via 5G technology.

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