Gaist’s mapping and roadscape data expertise have been utilised in a landmark project to assess 5G mobile coverage in the West Midlands.

Gaist partnered with RootMetrics, an industry-leading mobile performance benchmarking company, to support its capture of a rich and comprehensive seam of data around 5G density in the Sandwell area.

The work was shared with the West Midlands 5G (WM5G) programme – the programme established by the West Midlands Combined Authority and the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) to develop the UK’s first region-wide 5G testbed.

The performance data will determine the availability of 5G to support test use cases.

The launch of 5G has been heralded as the ‘next generation’ of mobile connectivity. The technology, which is 5-10 times faster than 4G, promises benefits such as buffer-free streaming of content and super-fast downloads as well as a significant economic uplift.

The capture of comprehensive, high-quality and reliable data tracking the progress of uptake and coverage is critical to unlock 5G’s full potential, identify blockers and reduce the costs of roll-out.

Gaist vehicles were equipped with RootMetrics testing kits to scientifically collect coverage data and our best-practice approach to planning and executing the data capture was adopted.

Over a 12-day period, the joint project saw us drive over 434 kms across the area, while RootMetrics collected test samples over 86 square kilometers and conducted nearly 21,000 total tests.

RootMetrics said that working with Gaist had enabled it to capture a “new level” of test sample density. “Tests were conducted on literally every road in Sandwell, providing organisations in the area with key insights and data on each operator’s network – down to the street level.”

Rhys Enfield, Director of Infrastructure Acceleration at WM5G, said: “The detailed 5G coverage data received from the Sandwell trial allowed WM5G to successfully assess the feasibility of important use case trials in the area.

“Coverage information is vital to inform not only use cases but to really understand the impact of deployment of 5G in the region.”

Paula Claytonsmith, Gaist’s MD, said: “We are passionate about the provision of accurate and detailed data to enable better understanding of behaviour and utilisation trends. We were delighted to be able to deploy our expertise to support this important project.”

For a copy of the full RootMetrics report click here

For more information on Gaist’s highways mapping technology, services and expertise please contact Ian.Job@gaist.co.uk.