Tampere, the first Finish city with a private network
EDZCOM, a company of Cellnex, and Signify have entered into a partnership with the City of Tampere, in Finland to build an innovative and long-term private network project with the vision to make the city a better place for its citizens to live and work. The connectivity project leverages the indigenous light infrastructure to create new data driven services that are run on analytics, as well as being predictive and cognitive in nature.
“The City of Tampere wants to be the forerunner city of new technologies,” says Teppo Rantanen, Executive Director for Growth, Innovation, and Competitiveness at City of Tampere. “We have a long connection with Signify and after analysing the processes involved, and the impact on the city and its infrastructure, we decided to implement this important pilot that it started at the beginning of 2022. This collaboration between EDZCOM, Signify, and the City of Tampere definitely has long-term potential.”
“One of the central features of the programme is called ‘Data driven city for citizens’ and the idea is to really use the data for our citizens, to see how the data helps their everyday life. It’s all about how we can make the data serve our citizens better and how people can connect with a broad information flow. In the future it will also be about things like looking at security and safety, as well as other elements like autonomous driving and how we can connect that with low latency which 5G will bring us.”
EDZCOM, a European market leader in Edge Connectivity solutions, and Signify, a world leader in lighting for professionals and consumers and lighting for the Internet of Things (IoT), had the opportunity to showcase their unique connectivity collaboration with the City of Tampere at the Smart City Week expo that was held in the City of Tampere last 14-15 June 2022 at the next-gen Nokia Arena.
“Connectivity is one of the key drivers of digitalisation and the key element in the project was that EDZCOM and Signify were able to offer something of value to the City of Tampere, and the city had needs in terms of improving its connectivity for the benefit of its citizens. In approaching this project, we had the benefit, as part of Cellnex, to have done something similar in London, and so this infra-project was about utilising the assets that Tampere has, in this case, the streetscape assets, meaning the lighting system, and this enables with the technology EDZCOM and Signify offer, the ability to build a very high-performance wireless private network for the city. In addition, we can also provide a faster roll-out for 5G for densification on top of that base network we are building, so there are multiple benefits for all parties here,” says Mikko Uusitalo, Global Director of Mission Critical & Private Networks at Cellnex.
“The City of Tampere is very internationally oriented and by a mile is the leader in being an innovator in the smart city environment. That is well recognised in the Nordics and even further afield. This is a first for a project like this in Finland, so they are pioneers in that sense. This is a unique project.”
Khalid Aziz, Business Leader, Smart City Connectivity Solutions at Signify comments that “the project is truly a transformational and unique approach to building the new generation of digital infrastructure in the Nordics. The city has a very ambitious goal of creating a human-centric city that works with its citizens and provides services that can be enabled through digital connectivity. The City of Tampere selected us as their technology provider, and EDZCOM, as a service provider, to together utilise the indigenous light platform infrastructure to build a data network that provides many services for its citizens. For us, it is a great opportunity to work in partnership with EDZCOM, a company who understands the dynamics and useability of technology, and to be involved in the most iconic connectivity project that we see in the Nordics right now.”
In May 2022, Tampere hosted the 2022 IIHF Ice Hockey World Championships at the 15,000 capacity Nokia Arena, a next-generation arena opened in December 2021. The solutions implemented by EDZCOM and Signify helped the city and the arena to dynamically adjust its digital needs to cater to the event and to provide more data capacity, more citizen services, and more security and safety for people. Concrete applications and use cases that are currently being deployed in the city are now utilising the solutions put in place by these companies. In addition, while in the legacy world projects of this nature can take 2-3 years to prepare, here EDZCOM and Signify were able to deploy the infrastructure within days to create a flexible new digital infrastructure which does not clutter the city, as it is embedded within the streetscape luminaires (light points). This facilitated the creation of a high-bandwidth broadband data network to allow the city to cater for all their requirements.