UBC becomes first 5G Smart Campus in Canada

As of November 5, UBC is the first campus in Canada to be fully outfitted with 5G wireless technology as part of its multi-million dollar partnership with Rogers Communications. The campus now includes 5G towers and a data centre used by researchers to test 5G applications in a real-world setting.

"Collaboration between universities and industry is critical to fully leverage the opportunities offered by 5G," said Dr. Gail Murphy, Vice-President, Research and Innovation, UBC. "Our partnership with Rogers builds on the strength of UBC’s campus as a living lab – providing students with opportunities to build the skills for tomorrow and supporting faculty research on 5G-based solutions to significant local and global challenges."

A number of research projects are underway using the 5G network on campus, including earthquake and tsunami detection technology, digital mining technology and 5G Mobility as a Service (MaaS). UBC students were also among the first Canadians to work with a live 5G network at a Rogers-hosted hackathon last month. "We worked with Rogers to provide dedicated, standalone WiFi UBC access points ... and our Cisco WiFi access points were connected directly to the 5G HotSpots via ethernet," says Eric Bourdon, Senior Manager, Network and Infrastructure. "This allowed all attendees to utilize a real 5G backhaul with their non-5G capable devices." According to Rogers Communications representatives, this was the first production use of 5G in Canada, and it couldn't have been done without UBC IT staff.

For more on how UBC’s partnership with Rogers Communications will drive research of 5G application, view this November 5 article from the Vancouver Sun.