Telia joins digitalization initiatives for smart cities and transportation in Sweden

Telia has joined leading companies and the public sector in the Urban ICT Arena and Drive Sweden collaboration initiatives to support innovation and development of sustainable smart cities. Telia contributes with competence and infrastructure in the ICT area to test new technology and new services such as smart public transportation and self-driving vehicles.

- By sharing our knowledge, experience and technologies in value-creating networks that we can take the opportunities of digitalization from the drawing-table to reality. This is why we support collaboration initiatives like Urban ICT Arena and Drive Sweden and will contribute with our digital high-ways and unique competences in the ICT-area, says, Mats Lundbäck, Chief Technology Officer (CTO), Telia in Sweden.

This was announced in conjunction with Kista Mobility Week in Stockholm, where Mats Lundbäck participated in the opening and tried the self-driving bus (second from right in picture).

Urban ICT Arena is an open arena in IT intensive Kista in Stockholm for collaboration and technical development and integration in urban environments. Here, opportunities of digitalization and development of society can be developed, tested and demonstrated. Among the founders are Swedish ICT, The City of Stockholm and Ericsson. 

Drive Sweden is a national strategic innovation program with several leading companies and institutions as partners, for example Volvo Group, Volvo Cars, Ericsson, Chalmers Institute of Technology and the Royal Institute of Technology (KTH) as well as several other members in the transportation echo system in Sweden. The purpose is to change the view of mobility in society and focus on how vehicles should function in a digital and connected world and as a part of the building of smart cities.

- These collaborations are important to test new technologies, for example 5G, the next-generations mobile network. Especially since the development of the smart and sustainable city means that more and more of the urban environment is connected to the Internet of Things (IoT), such as vehicles, traffic lights and traffic management systems. This puts high demands on the digital infrastructure and especially the networks as its backbone, Mats Lundbäck ends.

At Kista Mobility Week April 25-29th the Urban ICT Arenas digital infrastructure and Ericsson's 5G test net was used to display the latest innovations in smart public transportation, for example self-driving buses. The first commercial 5G networks is not expected until around year 2020.

Earlier this year Telia Company and Ericsson announced a strategic partnership to let customers in Stockholm and Tallinn experience 5G services already in 2018. The collaboration is tapping into both companies’ strengths in innovation and technology, as well as understanding of how ICT, digitalization and connectivity impact consumer, business and society.

Digitalization changes urban mobility

Connected vehicles is one of the fastest growing areas in Internet of Things. In only four years, 2020, it is estimated that 50% of all vehicles will be connected. Echo systems and intelligent transportation systems around connected vehicles are now emerging and will have a big impact on the development of society and especially cities develop. The way of transportation for people and goods change where resources are shared and used in a smarter and more efficient way, something that contributes to a more flexible and sustainable urban mobility. Read more in Telia and Arthur D Littles Connected Things –report.