Verizon, Corning collaborate on 5G 'factory of the future'

Verizon's 5G Ultra Wideband service is now live at Corning’s factory in Hickory, North Carolina.

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Verizon announced that it has installed its 5G Ultra Wideband service in Corning’s fiber-optic cable manufacturing facility in Hickory, North Carolina.

Corning will use Verizon’s 5G technology to test how 5G can enhance functions such as factory automation and quality assurance in Corning's plant, which is one of the largest fiber-optic cable manufacturing facilities in the world. The companies say they are also working together to co-innovate new 5G-enabled platforms that can potentially revolutionize the way goods and services are produced.

Per a Verizon press statement, "5G’s low latency, fast speeds and high bandwidth can improve the manufacturing process, enhancing capabilities like machine learning, augmented reality and virtual reality (AR/VR). Engineers from Verizon and Corning will explore how the factory of the future can use 5G to dramatically speed data collection, allow machines to communicate with each other in near real time, and wirelessly track and inspect inventory using 5G-connected cameras. They’ll also test how 5G can improve the function of autonomous guided vehicles (AGVs) by helping them move more efficiently around the factory floor."

“5G will usher in the Fourth Industrial Revolution enabling massive steps forward in robotics and automation that will transform supply chain management and create smarter and more efficient factories,” commented Tami Erwin, executive vice president and CEO of Verizon Business Group. “We’re thrilled to collaborate with Corning to explore how 5G will ultimately reshape the way the manufacturing industry operates.”

The new project advances Verizon's longstanding collaboration with Corning, which has recently focused on solutions that speed deployment of 5G using Corning’s advanced optical technologies and Verizon’s next-generation network architecture.

"Together, Verizon and Corning engineers expect to break new ground by identifying which 5G-enabled capabilities offer the most promise in a manufacturing environment," concluded Dr. Claudio Mazzali, senior vice president of technology for Corning’s Optical Communications business segment. "This builds on our collaboration with Verizon in a powerful way: Verizon turned to Corning for the fiber, cable, and optical connectivity innovations that are bringing their 5G network to life. Now Verizon is bringing 5G capabilities to a plant where those cable innovations are produced – completing the circle.”

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