MWC 2018: After Pyeongchang, Intel set their sights on Tokyo

Credit: Fergus Halliday | IDG

Intel have announced that a collaboration with Japanese mobile carrier NTT DOCOMO will see them bring new experiences to the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games.

According to the company, “As we look to 2020, Intel is excited to unveil today our collaboration with NTT DOCOMO (a National Partner of Tokyo 2020) to provide 5G technology for the next Olympic Games. Intel hopes to establish what’s expected to be the world’s largest 5G commercial network.”

At this year’s Winter Olympic Games in Pyeongchang, Intel broke records for their drone light-show that was pre-recorded and shown during the event’s opening ceremony. Making use of 1280, the light-show proved a hit among spectators and earned the company a nod from Guinness Book of World Records for “the most unmanned aerial vehicles airborne simultaneously.”

The display amounted to more than double the previous record of 500 drones, also set by Intel, flown during a 2016 demonstration in Germany.

Credit: Fergus Halliday | IDG

In addition to the drone light-show, Intel also showcased a number of 5G-integrated technologies at this year’s Winter Olympics. According to senior vice president and general manager of the Network Platforms Group at Intel Sandra Rivera, this year's Olympic Winter Games offered "preview of our 5G future.”

“Our joint activations will give visitors a unique opportunity to experience 5G technologies. And they will highlight Intel’s unique 5G strengths across the network, client and cloud – the foundation for a massive new wave of connected devices and data. For 5G to become reality, all these elements need to come together into a powerful end-to-end 5G solution.”

Writing on the Intel blog, she says that “For centuries, the Olympics has served as the premier forum for testing the limits of human performance. This year, Intel will add to the experience by flexing our technology and innovation muscle.”

It’s expected that Intel’s collaboration with NTT DOCOMO will see them utilize 5G networks in a similar spirit, deploying 5G, VR and drone-based installations. Speaking at an event in Barcelona this week, Intel's senior vice president and chief strategy officer Aicha S. Evans suggested that both 8K and connected cities technology would likely play a prominent role as part this.

Credit: Fergus Halliday | IDG

Of course, by 2020, it’s expected that the rollout of 5G networks will be in full swing. Carriers worldwide are currently preparing to build and launch networks in 2019 following the certification of the first official 5G spec by 3GPP.

For a longer look at everything that happened at this year's Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, click here.

Disclosure - Our coverage of MWC 2018 was sponsored by Intel who covered the cost of our flights and accommodation.

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Tags intelOlympicsNTT DoCoMoWinter Olympics

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