Audi and Ericsson team up for 5G-enabled carmaking

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Audi and Ericsson have announced their plans to pioneer the use of 5G technology for automotive production at a meeting at the automaker's headquarters in Ingolstadt, Germany.

The two companies agreed on a range of activities which would explore the potential of 5G as a future-proof communication technology designed to meet the high demands of automotive production.

Audi and Ericsson signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) during their meeting and over the course of the next few months, experts from both firms will run field tests at the Audi Production Lab in Gaimersheim, Germany.

Audi AG's Chief Information Officer, Frank Loydl explained how 5G technology could improve smart factories, saying:

“The fully networked factory will have a significant impact on the production of the future. A powerful network architecture that can respond in real time is of decisive importance for us. As part of the project with our partner Ericsson, we are testing the opportunities offered by 5G technology for industrial applications in the smart factory.” 

Audi and Ericsson are also exploring whether 5G can be used in other Audi Group factories in addition to the Ingolstadt plant.

Ericsson's Group CTO, Erik Ekudden offered further insight on the the company's current 5G programs, saying:

“Ericsson is already running 5G industry programs all over the world to help manufacturers boost productivity and create new business opportunities. This project is a great opportunity to see what is possible when we bring 5G into an automobile production environment to truly enable smart wireless manufacturing.” 

During the first phase of the project, Audi and Ericsson will test a latency-critical application using wirelessly connected production robots equipped with a gluing application which is a commonly used technique in auto body construction.

We will likely hear more regarding the two firm's partnership once their initial tests are underway.

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