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Canada’s 5G communication highway gets fast-tracked

Historic ENCQOR partnership launches digital technology partnership that yields $400-million investment


An exciting new initiative was recently launched that will lay the groundwork for the first fifth generation wireless, abbreviated 5G, pre-commercial network platform in Canada with ENCQOR (Evolution of Networked Services through a Corridor in Québec and Ontario for Research and Innovation).

ENCQOR is a transformational $400 million partnership that brings together five global digital technology leaders (Ericsson, Ciena Canada Inc., Thales Canada Inc., IBM Canada, and CGI) and provincial coordinators Prompt, CEFRIO, and Ontario Centres of Excellence (OCE). This partnership is made possible in part by funding from the Canadian government and the provincial governments of Quebec and Ontario.

Over the next five years, ENCQOR is establishing the first Canadian pre-commercial corridor of 5G wireless communication technologies — the next generation of digital communication and the key to unlocking the massive potential of smart cities, smart grid, e-health, e-education, connected and autonomous vehicles, on-demand entertainment and media, and the Internet of Things (IoT), among others. It will also secure over 4,000 good middle-class jobs, including 1,800 specialized 5G jobs, over the next five years leading to new innovations in wireless telecommunications. In addition, the project is expected to create jobs at SMEs across Ontario and Quebec.

This initiative will develop a world-class collaborative platform for accelerating the transition to game-changing 5G technology in Quebec, Ontario, and Canada by bringing together a wide network of small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), industry, government, researchers and academia in both provinces to collaborate on the creation and commercialization of new and disruptive products, processes, and services.

“Technology is changing the way we live, work and engage with one another, and we are in a global innovation race,” says the Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development. “To prepare for the future, we must be bold, visionary and decisive. That’s why our government is investing in 5G technology. This investment in next-generation wireless technology will help make Canada a global innovation leader and secure 4,000 jobs.”

A public-private partnership in the field of ultra-high-speed communications, ENCQOR will focus on research and innovation in the field of 5G disruptive technologies, on adoption initiatives and system uses. With download speeds up to 100 times faster than current 4G technology, 5G and ENCQOR will transform the capabilities of SMEs to create and compete in the global marketplace.

“The Government of Quebec is proud to contribute to the success of the ENCQOR project, which will create an important synergy between businesses—particularly businesses in the information and communications technologies sector—and the research and innovation community,” says Dominique Anglade, Quebec Deputy Premier, Minister of Economy, Science and Innovation, and Minister responsible for the Digital Strategy.

“The introduction of 5G will enable new services, new ecosystems, and new revenue streams for operators across Canada. R&D work done here in Canada has been a large contributor to Ericsson’s global leadership in 5G already, and we are excited to now bring this innovative work to Canada as part of the ENCQOR partnership,” says Graham Osborne, Head of Ericsson Canada

Using a collaborative approach, ENCQOR will see SMEs engaged in calls for projects and other streams together with industry partners in order to accelerate the development and adoption of transformative technologies that allow Central Canada to build the backbone of the next generation of digital infrastructure.

 

  • “The ENCQOR project will enable a significant step in the evolution and commercialization of 5G, and we look forward to working with these partners to drive forward this next generation of mobile networks. Ciena’s expertise in packet, optical and software-enabled technologies plays a key role in creating more adaptive networks accelerating the adoption of 5G.”
    – Scott McFeely, Senior Vice President, Ciena

 

Quick Facts

  • ENCQOR establishes the first Canadian pre-commercial corridor of 5G wireless communication technologies — the key to accelerating the transition to game-changing 5G technology.
  • ENCQOR’s cutting-edge platforms will leverage 5G to empower entrepreneurs and SMEs to develop and export a new wave of creative products and services in areas such as smart cities, e-health, connected and autonomous vehicles, fintech, cybersecurity, the Internet of Things (IoT) and others.
  • This project will establish a world-class collaborative platform in Canada for ICT and digital technology research, innovation, and application demonstration, involving dozens of universities, colleges and research centres in both provinces, coming together on a unique open innovation research infrastructure in which 5G, cloud computing, and big data are the dominant technologies of interest.