5G project gets $400M for grants, infrastructure and research centres

Originally published by The Wire Report
Author: Bryson Masse

OTTAWA — A public-private partnership to foster 5G technology research in Ontario and Quebec will receive funding to the tune of $400 million over the next five years, according to an announcement Monday.

The federal, Quebec and Ontario governments, as well as five global communications companies, will contribute funds that will be administered by the Ontario Centres of Excellence (OCE) in Ontario, and Centre facilitant la recherche et l’innovation dans les organisations (CEFRIO) and Prompt in Quebec.

Andrew Robertson, manager of media relations at the Ontario Centres of Excellence (OCE), said in an email that part of the money will go to develop research centres based in both provinces where small and medium enterprises will be able to share work and office space, perform research, apply for grants as well as gain access to 5G network infrastructure and expertise to develop their 5G-related products.

According to Robertson, the five companies — Ericsson AB, Ciena Inc., CGI Group Inc., Thales SA’s Canada division, and IBM Corp.’s Canada division — will provide distinct contributions to the partnership. Ericsson, Ciena and IBM will contribute to the project by developing and building 5G wired and wireless infrastructure. Thales and CGI committed to use the features of 5G to deploy sensors for transit applications and augmented reality/virtual reality (AR/VR) products for smart grids, respectively. Each will bring their particular expertise to support businesses, Ericsson and Ciena’s infrastructure will be found in the research centres, and the end result will be the creation of a platform called the ENCQOR 5G test bed, according to Robertson.

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