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Home BUSINESSOulu opens global contest to pilot 5G tech
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Fri, 19 Feb, 2016 02:57:27 AM
FTimes Report, Feb 19

The City of Oulu and Nokia in conjunction with their partners have initiated a unique 3-track international competition titled 5GFWD.

The contest challenges the most innovative designers, enterprises and students in the world to create ideas to utilise 5G technology in any way that contributes to people’s everyday lives. It’s all about great new and disruptive ideas – no detailed tech specs are needed.

The three tracks are: ‘Easy Living & Work­ing!’ ‘Shopping Frenzy!’ and ‘Health Goes 5G!’ The aim is to utilise the winning innovations in genuine environ­ments.

The competition is free for everyone – just choose the track that is closest to your interests, or join all three, and the amount of prize money totals at 40,000 euros.

The ‘Easy Living & Working!’ track targets, for example, the wireless working day of the future and all the new services that could be available for people in the city when it comes to things like traffic data, various events, or simply finding your friends.

“It is said that digitalization is challenging to shops and stores globally. At our new shopping centre Valkea we feel just the opposite. We are specifically looking for ideas for a digital customer experience: what happens even before you actually visit the shopping centre or after you leave,” said Cooperative Arina Marketing Direc­tor Pasi Ruuskanen, the brains behind the ‘Shopping Frenzy!’ challenge.

The ‘Health Goes 5G!’ challenge emphasises vital ideas: Can a family prepare for a hospital visit in a way that would make it more comforting, efficient and pleasant? Could the hospital staff get more information about a coming patient already in advance? What will a 5G ambulance be like in the future?

The ‘Easy Living & Working!’ and ‘Shopping Frenzy!’ tracks are free and open to all participants. The ‘Health Goes 5G!’ is targeted to companies, and the winner will also be admitted to a pilot project by OuluHealth.

The track winners’ prizes are 4,000 euros each. From among the track winners the jury will reward the grand prix winner, the best of the best, with a prize of 10,000 euros. On the Digital Health track, the winners will get an exclusive prize of session time in OYS Test Lab’s 5G environment in Oulu University Hospital worth 10,000 euros plus team membership in an OuluHealth pilot project.

The 5GFWD competition strengthens Oulu region’s role as one of the international hubs in 5G development. Oulu is already known as perhaps the most notable centre of radio technology development in the world, and more than 2.6 billion people use ICT technology developed in the region.

“We wish to stir up international and Finnish companies and make them focus on 5G in their strategies as a significant competitive advantage. The region’s ICT ecosystem provides companies with a unique environ­ment for development. It speeds up the road of products from innovations to testing phase and into the market. The University of Oulu and the Technical Research Centre of Finland already have a 5G test laborato­ry. The next 5G environment will be built in the OYS TestLab at Oulu University Hospital,” said BusinessOulu Executive Director Juha Ala-Mursula in a press release.

Among the competition organisers are the City of Oulu, Nokia, Technopolis, Oulu University Hospital, OuluHealth, 6Aika, Cooperative Arina, Ericsson, VTT, the municipality of Kempele, the municipality of Tyrnävä, CorGroup, Sanmina, 9Solutions, Finavia, and Bittium.

Pre-registering to the competition has already started online at The competition itself will be launched on February 29. The final takes place on June 10 in Oulu – where the 5G magic happens.

All finalists’ travel costs to Oulu will be paid by the 5GFWD up to a total of 2,000 euros for two persons.

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