O2 5G powers smart ambulance trials

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O2 will provide mobile connectivity for a trial of smart ambulances that aims to improve the speed of a patient’s diagnosis and the level of treatment that can be offered by paramedics.

The project will see a standard ambulance equipped with technology and 5G capabilities, allowing paramedics to conduct checks, collect data and communicate with consultants while the patient is being transported to a medical facility.

“It’s no secret there is increasing pressure on our health services. Healthcare is one of the areas set to benefit most from 5G technology, with faster, more effective treatment, and significant efficiency savings,” said Derek McManus, O2 COO.

O2 Smart ambulance 

“That’s why we’re supporting the Smart Ambulance trials as part of the AutoAir 5G project to accelerate the adoption of connected and self-driving technology and unlock the benefits of 5G for communities and businesses alike”.

The addition of 5G will ensure paramedics have access to faster upload and download speeds and lower-latency, reliable connectivity when speaking with specialists. Samsung’s Galaxy S10 smartphones will also be included in the ambulance, as weill technology from two startups involved with O2’s parent company Telefonica’s Wayra accelerator.

Visionable will provide a video and voice collaboration platform that enables live conferencing as well as high quality picture quality that allows for more accurate medical scans. Meanwhile, Launchcloud will provide data collection tools that aid asset tracking, compliance and greater automation, and API tools that enable integration with cloud platforms.

Testing will take place the Millbrook Proving Ground vehicle testing facility in Bedford, which is currently host to a 5G testbed. Here O2 also provides the connectivity for trials involving connected and autonomous vehicles.

Steve McCaskill is TechRadar Pro's resident mobile industry expert, covering all aspects of the UK and global news, from operators to service providers and everything in between. He is a former editor of Silicon UK and journalist with over a decade's experience in the technology industry, writing about technology, in particular, telecoms, mobile and sports tech, sports, video games and media.