7 trillion devices will need high speed access by 2020

By Anita Jaynes on 22 April, 2014

At a recent seminar jointly organised by the Enterprise Europe Network South West (EEN SW), Business West and The UK’s Technology Strategy Board, Mark Beach, Professor at the University of Bristol predicted that by the year 2020, over 7 trillion devices would be connected to the global mobile network, and that the current 3G and 4G technology will simply not be able to cope.

To meet this challenge, South West businesses were encouraged to participate in the European Commission’s flagship Research and Development (R&D) funding programme – Horizon 2020. This €79bn fund has a number of key R&D objectives including the development of the next generation of mobile networks and the desire to keep European developed technologies at its heart.

Paul O’Collins, Manager of EEN SW said: “The challenge is clear. We need to ensure that European technology companies lead the way in the development of the next generation of mobile networks. The Horizon 2020 funding programme is specifically designed to support the research and development of both large and small businesses to help maintain Europe’s leading position in this and other key sectors.”

Dr Neil Davies, Chief Scientist at Predictable Network Solutions attended the seminar and was equally clear: “There are significant issues around the huge anticipated demand for mobile networks and mobile devices. The laws of physics set real challenges for meeting these objectives. We are all bound by the fundamental constraints of information theory and the speed of light.  We are going to have to rethink how our networks are designed, built and controlled in order to meet this potentially huge demand for simultaneous high speed access to trillions of devices.”

For further information on the funding available to help Research and Development and how EENSW can help SMEs apply for Horizon 2020 funding, visit www.businesswest.co.uk or email Layla.Burrows@enterpriseeuropesw.org.uk