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5G Technology Can Play Crucial Role in Agricultural Growth

In the remote backwoods of Andhra Pradesh, techies from Sweden’s Ericsson, the world’s largest telecom equipment maker, are using high-end sensors to track the flow of the river Godavari to optimally distribute water to farmers for agriculture and minimise floods. Another Ericsson team is deploying wireless sensor networks to reuse ammonia-rich waste water for cost-effective organic farming.

Finland’s Nokia, too, is beefing up its R&D facility in Bengaluru to develop new-age service such as Internet of Things (IoT) and deliver apps that can be relevant across India, especially those related to agriculture, healthcare, transportation and smart cities.

At the Mobile World Congress 2018 in Barcelona, Ericsson demonstrated two live IoT use-cases in a 5G environment, which it said, could be relevant for India.

Nitin Bansal, Ericsson’s head of network solutions for South East Asia, Oceania & India, said these cases are related to landslide disaster monitoring and early warning systems, while the farming solution uses artificial intelligence to monitor temperature, humidity and CO2 levels to maintain greenhouse ventilation and ideal crop-growing conditions. These are examples of how 5G technology can be harnessed to transform the lives of farmers in India, the world’s second-largest telecom market.

5G or ‘fifth-generation’ is a fast, wireless broadband technology that will transcend smartphones and connect anything from cars, machines and home appliances at speeds 50-to-100 times faster than present 4G networks.

Globally, US carriers Verizon and AT&T are poised to start the first wave of commercial 5G launches later this year, which, in turn, will be followed by operators in Japan and South Korea in 2019. China, which finalised 5G spectrum band for trials almost a year ago, is slated to start pre-commercial 5G rollouts early next year.


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