German automaker Audi and the country’s Deutsche Telekom (DT) telecommunications group are entering into a pioneering 5G cellular technology partnership together with the city of Ingolstadt, which aims to make urban mobility safer, more digital and sustainable.
The three partners have signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) that is the basis for the development of a digital transport infrastructure that in the long term will offer people greater road safety, better traffic flows and real-time digital services. The city council of Ingolstadt had already approved the cooperation and an application to set up a 5G model region in July. The future 5G cellular network standard will allow significantly higher bandwidths and virtually real-time network responses, allowing faster communication between different road users, automated driving, and connections to the Internet of Things (IoT). Ingolstadt will comprehensively support the installation and deployment of DT’s 5G cellular infrastructure in the city, allowing application-oriented developments in the mobility sector by Audi as well as other industrial companies.
One possible 5G application is connected traffic signals at road junctions that exchange anonymized movement data with cars and other road users via the 5G network. This will enable drivers or cars themselves to react more quickly to unforeseen movements. The mobile 5G devices used by pedestrians and cyclists can also be integrated into real-time communication between infrastructure and cars, so that all road users can be connected as comprehensively as possible. The introduction of new technologies such as 5G can also reduce the time spent searching for parking spaces, which is a significant proportion of increased traffic volumes in cities. Free parking spaces will be communicated to drivers as real-time information so that they can navigate directly to them.
“As a technology location, Ingolstadt is open to and welcoming to innovations. Together with companies and scientists, we are prepared to cooperate here in the testing and development of applications. Because if new technologies promise an advantage, we should also use them for the benefit of people,” said Dr Christian Lösel, Mayor of Ingolstadt. “We see cooperation on the ‘Ingolstadt Test Field’ as a contribution towards securing qualified jobs in our city and as a demonstration of our efforts as a location for digital mobility. As with all innovations, however, the population must also be involved in 5G and actively informed about the technology and related projects.”
Martin Knauer, DT’s head of cellular sales for business customers, said, “As a technology leader, we are supporting the city of Ingolstadt and Audi with the implementation of their innovative ideas. We are bringing 5G not only to the people of Germany, but also to the country’s industry. In the future, innovation and 5G will be inseparable. We are therefore delighted to be working with Audi and the city of Ingolstadt.”
Audi Electronics Venture’s managing director, Peter Steiner, added, “Consistently connected; that’s our goal along the way to the mobility of tomorrow. On the basis of 5G technology, as an automobile manufacturer we can contribute towards improving mobility in cities. Together, we are developing integrated solutions for the city of the future.”