The Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA) and the National Research Foundation (NRF) have set aside S$40 million (US$29.5 million) to build an open and inclusive 5G Innovation ecosystem.
This was announced at Innovfest Unbound, the anchor event of the Smart Nation Innovations Week held recently in Singapore.
According to IMDA, the fund will support 5G technology trials for enterprise use-cases and in creating new open testbeds as well as R&D in 5G, including cybersecurity.
“As a start, IMDA will explore clusters such as maritime operations; urban mobility; smart estates; Industry 4.0, consumer applications and government applications,” IMDA said in a news release.
This early, it said industry partnerships are already underway. For example, a technology call by IMDA and PSA have been awarded to two mobile network operators, Singtel and M1, to explore the use of 5G technology for the Maritime industry.
“This technology call aims to explore 5G capabilities, and how it could potentially address PSA’s connectivity needs to enhance port productivity,” IMDA said.
A*STAR, JTC and Singtel have also signed a memorandum of understanding to deploy 5G at A*STAR’s Advanced Remanufacturing and Technology Centre (ARTC) in Jurong Innovation District.
IMDA said the goal is to integrate 5G with technologies such as internet of things (IoT) and artificial intelligence (AI).
“We meet at a time when digitalization is transforming industries, cities and economies. Digital technology, we all know, is a force multiplier that allows us to transcend the limitation of scale and the barrier of distance,” said S Iswaran, Minister for Communications and Information, in his speech at the opening of the Smart Nation Summit on Wednesday, June 26.
In Singapore, he said the vision is “for a digital economy where every business is digitally empowered, every worker is digitally skilled, and every citizen is digitally connected.”
During the summit, IMDA launched launched other initiatives to support this vision.
Smart estates, progressive legislation
IMDA said it is working closely with government agencies and industry partners to develop the Smart Estates ecosystem and enable Singapore developers, Singapore-based technology companies and Built Environment service providers to innovate in Singapore.
It awarded S$1.5 million (US$1.1 million) for eight projects for the Smart Estates Call for Innovation Solutions (CFIS) with Ascendas-Singbridge and JTC.
“Such projects include innovative use of 3D Digital Twin technology, and a cloud-based platform to enable quick searches for assets through a visual tour,” IMDA said.
Alongside these initiatives is progressive legislation to facilitate electronic transactions.
“The Electronic Transactions Act (ETA) provides legal certainty to electronic transactions in Singapore, which facilitates the digitalization of transactions,” it said.
A public consultation to seek views on the review of the ETA is in progress to explore the possibility of including more electronics transactions under the ambit of the ETA, including property transactions, Bills of Lading, Electronic Transferable Records and Lasting Powers of Attorney, as well as provide certainty on the use of new technologies such as DLT, Smart Contracts and Biometrics.
“As we enter a digital-as-usual age, it is even more imperative for all segments of society to continue their urgent efforts to digitalize to be relevant and competitive,” said Tan Kiat How, Chief Executive of IMDA, in a news release.