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China Unicom Guangdong and Huawei Win GSMA's "5G Productivity Challenge"

Solution provides 5G coverage 60 kilometers from shore
Feb 02, 2023

[Guangzhou, China, February 2, 2023] China Unicom Guangdong and Huawei's 5G Digital Fishing project won GSMA's "5G Productivity Challenge" Award. The award recognizes the two companies’ innovative capabilities in 5G, in this case for extending first-class wireless coverage to fishermen at sea.

GSMA award

China Unicom Guangdong and Huawei win GSMA's "5G Productivity Challenge"

"Along more than 450 km of coastline near the Chinese city of the Yangjiang, 5G is quite literally transforming the lives of workers in the fishing industry by enabling them to monitor the weather, market their catch, and keep in touch with families, while up to 60 km offshore. Already serving more than 4,000 boats, China Unicom's digital fishing vessel system is also helping the authorities reduce the risks posed by typhoons, while clamping down on illegal operations that might result in over-fishing," said David Pringle, one of the judges on the GSMA panel.

wire service

5G MetaAAU provides MBB services for digital fishing vessels

The 5G digital fishing vessel system jointly developed by China Unicom Guangdong and Huawei is based on China Unicom's 5G Private Network PLUS. Incorporating data provided by China’s BeiDou positioning system as well as data from various sea-based sensors, the solution uses cloud computing to provide dynamic monitoring of fishing vessels at sea in all weather conditions. With 5G MetaAAUs’ extremely large antenna array, the system fully utilizes the large bandwidth of 3.5 GHz to achieve the uplink and downlink access rates of 2 Mbps and 60 Mbps, respectively, even at 61 km offshore. Before the MetaAAU was developed, such long-range coverage was only possible at sub-gig frequencies that provide lower bandwidth. Fishermen on vessels within the coverage area now need nothing more than their smartphone to monitor news and other information such as weather forecasts, and keep in touch with their families through HD video calls. In case of emergency, they can make calls for rescue promptly with a 5G app designed for fishing vessel use. In addition, the app can assist them in selling their catch before they come back to shore.

Looking forward, China Unicom Guangdong will further extend the digital fishing vessel system’s coverage, to serve an expected 40,000 to 50,000 fishing vessels along the entire Guangdong coast. Furthermore, as partners working under the framework of "U-Joy Cities" announced in May 2022, China Unicom Guangdong and Huawei will also work with other industry partners in fields such as offshore wind power, offshore farms, and island tourism and extend the benefits of 5G to a growing range of industries.

So far, China Unicom Guangdong and Huawei have implemented 5G "U-Joy Cities" projects at Foshan Manufacturing City, Yangjiang Marine City, and Guangzhou Gigabit City, fully unleashing the value of 5G for smart life and smart industry. In coming years, the two parties will continue to explore new 5.5G application scenarios and develop pioneering experience that could help cities and rural areas around the world.

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