‘Leeds is the perfect place for 5G pilot’

FORWARD THINKING: Adam Beaumont believes Leeds can be at the technological forefront.
FORWARD THINKING: Adam Beaumont believes Leeds can be at the technological forefront.
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Leeds is ideally placed to pilot driverless cars, robotic surgery and other cutting edge technologies, one of the city’s leading tech experts has said.

Professor Adam Beaumont, chief executive and founder of aql, told the Yorkshire Evening Post that the location of the city’s data centres meant it was the perfect location to handle innovations which will require rapid real time decision-making by new technologies.

Unlike most cities, Leeds’s data centres are all located in and around the city centre, meaning that the transfer of data to our central computing centres can happen rapidly. This would mean that innovations such as driverless cars, robotic surgery, and logistics operations being carried out by drones and other driverless vehicles could be effectively piloted in Leeds.

As the Government prepares to invest money into piloting what the so-called 5G network can achieve, Professor Beaumont believes that Leeds’s digital infrastructure makes it the obvious location to do this.

He said: “There is Government money available for exploring what 5G looks like. I believe that that money will be better spent and more efficiently spent in Leeds because we do not have to establish some of the fundamental infrastructure in the city to make it happen.

“That connectivity between the innovators is really a piece of serendipity and it has not been engineered by accident. Leeds has a few things in its favour. One of which is the central piece of plumbing. Because of its logical location, it has also attracted the co-location of main nodes, for example the UK academic network, known as JANET. Pretty much all the traffic between the North and South’s universities passes through us and that includes all of the universities and the teaching hospitals.”