Scottish Government-backed 5G network underpins global coronation broadcasts

Written by Ruaraidh Gilmour and Sam Trendall on 26 May 2023 in News

Technology was used by BBC and 20 other international broadcasters

Credit: Torsten Simon/Pixabay

Next-generation mobile network technology which the publicly funded Scotland 5G Centre helped to develop was relied upon by international networks to broadcast the recent coronation of King Charles III.

Rollout of the technology was supported by BBC Research and Development to support the BBC’s live broadcast, as well as those delivered by 20 other major television networks, including CNN, Sky and CBS.

The temporary private 5G standalone network, which was deployed by the University of Strathclyde and spin-out company Neutral Wireless, claims to have been the largest of its kind at the used during the coronation. 

The 5G technology delivered one gigabyte per second of uncontested wireless connectivity carrying high-definition video from wireless cameras to production facilities around the world.

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Early design and testing of the network took place at the Scottish Government-funded Scotland 5G Centre’s rural testbed at Ross Priory in Loch Lomond and involved key partners from the broadcast and media production industry.

Last year, the University of Strathclyde and Neutral Wireless rolled out what was claimed as the world’s first ‘private 5G’ network that supported the live broadcast of the late Queen Elizabeth II’s final departure from Scotland.  

Innovation minister Richard Lochhead said: “The Scottish Government’s investment via our Scotland 5G Centre has made it possible for the Neutral Wireless team to break a new world record by broadcasting such a historic occasion to millions of people around the world over a 5G network. This outstanding achievement demonstrates once again how 5G technology can help transform Scotland’s economy by driving innovation and enhancing our global competitiveness.”

Ian Sharp, head of business development at the Scotland 5G Centre, said: “The coronation filming shows the enormous scope of 5G technology, being trusted to facilitate the worldwide broadcast of a historical moment. While all eyes were on London, behind the scenes, Scottish innovation and testing in the S5GC rural testbed at Loch Lomond helped the broadcast of this important day to go smoothly. This achievement showcases the transformative potential of 5G, as well as the need for testbed facilities and innovation hubs to support industry with real-world applications.”


About the author

Ruaraidh Gilmour is a reporter at PublicTechnology sister publication Holyrood, where a version of this story first appeared. He tweets as @Ruaraidh0.

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