5G has landed in Rome’s Leonardo da Vinci Airport. The new demo area, developed by TIM, ADR and Ericsson opened today: arriving and connecting travellers will have the opportunity to experience the innovative technology and services that will define mobile communications of the future.
The 5G demo area will be located at the Terminal T3 arrivals’ baggage claim, where travellers will be able to live innovative virtual guided tour services, one of the main 5G tourism applications. In particular, travellers will be taken on an immersive bilingual tour of Piazza Navona using virtual reality headsets: they will explore the square and its famous fountains at different times of day and night. This new immersive experience is the result of the high bandwidth and low latency of 5G network.
This important technological achievement makes Fiumicino Airport – recently named Europe’s best – the first airport in Italy with the new technology. The entire airport will gradually be equipped with 5G coverage. TIM and Ericsson, in fact, switched on the first 5G antenna at the airport, using frequencies awarded to TIM following the Ministry for Economic Development tender with a company’s total investment of 2.4 billion euros. Virtual reality is one of the applications that could further benefit from 5G network and it is already being widely used in many sectors such as in the tourism field, start-ups and local creative studios. It could represent an important means of promoting cultural assets of touristic areas, as set out in MiBAC’s Strategic Plan for Tourism.
‘By choosing Fiumicino Airport to demonstrate the 5G potential, TIM strengthens its leading role in the Italian mobile communications market and in the field of innovation,’ states Francesco D’Angelo, Head of Sales at TIM. ‘These services and applications will be soon available to all customers throughout the country. They will be a basis for improving people’s lives, company production processes and efficiency in public administration. 5G will create an environment in which everything is smarter and more connected, be it public security, mobility, environmental monitoring, healthcare, tourism, culture, media, education and entertainment.’
‘We’re pleased to host TIM’s initiative here at Fiumicino Airport, which as of today is the first Italian airport with the new 5G connection,’ says Emiliano Sorrenti, Information and Communications Technology Director at Aeroporti di Roma. ‘This innovation joins the cutting-edge technology already used at our Rome airport. These new solutions help us make daily operational decisions and make our passengers’ travel experiences more comfortable, due to the massive impact they had on optimising airport services. In accordance with the latest findings of ACI Europe, an international organisation that independently measures quality in over 300 airports around the world by interviewing travellers, Fiumicino was given the Airport Service Quality Award for 2018. The services travellers appreciated the most were electronic passport controls, clear information provided to the public and rapid security checks. This award was made possible by these last few years investments in technology.’
Raimondo Anello, Head of Innovation at TIM Customer Unit within Ericsson, explains: ‘This project strengthens the long-standing collaboration between Ericsson and TIM that saw the two companies launch significant initiatives in Italy, beginning with 5G for Italy to new use cases enabled by 5G technology, which is intended to become a national infrastructure of critical importance. It will set off a new phase of digital transformation and radically change the world we live in. Making virtual reality available at Fiumicino Airport is a prime example in the consumer sphere of how greater connectivity combined with low latency can open the door to innovative and interactive new services. As for industry, airports could benefit from 5G for automating and digitalising operating processes.’
Rome, 11 April 2019