In 2016, ZTE and the federal state of Carinthia entered into a digitisation partnership with the aim of making Carinthia the digital flagship region of Europe. In October 2018, this partnership was advanced with the clear objective of strengthening Carinthia as a location for mobility, tourism and business through the use of 5G technology.
- Drei, ZTE, SURAAA and the Federal State of Carinthia are bringing 5G, the technology of the future, to life
- Will showcase new opportunities for digitisation, tourism and the environment
- Real 5G, instead of 5G ready – real applications in the 5G network, 5G smartphone and will top transfer speeds up to one Gigabit per second
Throughout the course of this partnership and in cooperation with the project “Smart Urban Region Austria Alps Adriatic (SURAAA)”, the first intelligent lighting masts in Austria and autonomous driving systems were put into operation in Pörtschach / Wörthersee in 2017 as a leading Austrian project. In 2018 the innovation room, “see:PORT”, followed in Pörtschach with a focus on digitalisation, Smart City and start-ups and in June 2019, the presentation of automated air taxis (passenger drones) were launched.
As a result of this declaration of intent, to further strengthen the region and to expand the first 5G tourism community in Austria, Drei, ZTE, SURAAA and the federal state of Carinthia took the next big step in the implementation of future telecom technology in Austria. On 13 August 2019, live operation of 5G in Pörtschach / Wörthersee begun.
DI Jan Trionow, CEO of Drei Austria: “While others are still talking about “5G ready”, the digital future in the flagship region of Wörthersee is already a reality. With the start of the fifth mobile radio generation in Pörtschach, Drei will offer a more efficient Internet supply for Carinthian households and companies. The support of innovative regions is a large request to us as 5G helps to reduce the digital divide between the city and country and creates important new impulses for tourism, transport, medicine and agriculture.”
During the press conference at see:PORT, the project partners presented smart applications in order to make the new advantages for the population, environment, tourism and companies of the region a real experience.
Using interactive showcases, visitors could enjoy a 360-degree live view of the “Wörthersee” tourism region with virtual reality glasses and marvel at the revolutionary high-speed transfer speeds of up to one gigabit per second with a live demo of the latest 5G smartphone from the ZTE Axon 10 Pro series.
Christian Woschitz, Msc, CEO of ZTE Austria: “With the introduction of 5G in Pörtschach, today we are enabling the future of telecommunications in Carinthia by pointing out the promising future opportunities by means of smart applications. Thus, the existing cooperation between ZTE and the state of Carinthia, together with our long-standing partner Drei, will be raised to the next level. ZTE Austria sees it as an important task to strengthen Carinthia as a business and tourism location with international knowledge and generate local added value in Carinthia through co-operations, such as the one with IoT40 Systems. With the intensification and expansion of our partnership, we will make an important contribution to Carinthia’s tourism, environment and society”.
Bee-o-Meter. 5G Bee counter against bee mortality
Together, Drei, ZTE, SURAAA and the Carinthian company IoT40 Systems have designed the Bee-O-Meter and have installed it on the roof of the see:PORT in Pörtschach / Wörthersee. It is a smart beehive that not only counts the bees that fly out and return, but also monitors the surrounding environment. Via a 5G live stream of Drei, the beekeeper can keep a constant eye on the bees. If environmental pollution with measurable, negative influences on the bee colony occurs in the environment, the Bee-O-Meter immediately sounds the alarm. The evaluation of the collected measurement data by an artificial intelligence in the cloud allows conclusions to be drawn about the bee-hostile pesticide load in the environment of the hive within one day. In cooperation with the Federal State of Carinthia, the aim was set to equip a larger test region in Carinthia with Bee-O-Meters in 2020. The data collected in this way could then be used for research into bee diseases or to determine the purity level of Carnica bees.
Deepening project partnership and future ideas
The project partners have declared to continue and further develop their cooperation. In the course of this, there will be a 5G-Infodesk for visitors at see:PORT Pörtschach (Hauptstrasse 204, BKS building, 2nd floor), where interested visitors from the region can inform themselves about the latest developments of 5G products as well as facts about 5G and also test 5G live (on weekdays from 09 a.m. to 5 p.m.).
Dr. Albert Kreiner, Office of the Federal State Government: “I am very pleased that we have been able to win leading global companies, such as Drei and ZTE, as partners to strengthen the region and develop Carinthia as a business location. We have also jointly put the first 5G network into operation in Pörtschach / Wörthersee. I am convinced that with the 5G start in Pörtschach, we have taken an important further step for the benefit of the population, companies, agriculture and tourism in the region. Pörtschach will thus become the first 5G tourism community in Austria.”
For Dr. Kreiner, head of the Dept. 7 – Economy, Tourism and Mobility in the Carinthian Federal State Government, the promotion of innovation that benefit people and the economy is central. “We want to promote and attract favourable innovation in Carinthia and successfully continue the digitisation offensive in the economy, tourism and mobility in order to remain competitive in the future. The 5G technology is an essential element of the future, so the future in Pörtschach / Wörthersee is already a reality today”.
Mag. Silvia Häusl-Benz, Member of the Federal State Parliament and Mayor of Pörtschach: “Pörtschach / Wörthersee is pleased to be able to take on a pioneering role again and expects a positive effect for citizens, tourism and the economy in the community. Pörtschach is once again a showcase community for digital applications and therefore we hope to be able to welcome many start-ups and companies to Pörtschach / Wörthersee in the future”.
Walter Prutej, project manager of the R&D project, Smart Urban Region Austria Alps Adriatic SURAAA: “For SURAAA, the advantages of 5G applications are obvious: the new technology offers transfer rates of up to one gigabit per second and is required for our future technologies, such as autonomous driving or automated flight taxis. With the 5G standard, Pörtschach is also taking a further step towards an open 5G future laboratory for companies and start-ups. The see:PORT will thus become the first 5G Co-Working Space in Carinthia and Austria, giving domestic startups and companies a significant market advantage. Through 5G, Pörtschach also gets the best prerequisites for the new tourism target group of digital nomads (working around the globe regardless of location) – the beautiful Wörthersee landscape and a super-fast Internet connection.”
Hutchison Drei Austria GmbH is a 100% subsidiary of CK Hutchison Holdings Limited (Hong Kong) and a member of 3Group Europe. Drei achieved sales of EUR 425 million in the first half of 2019 and have around 3.9 million customers. As the leading telecommunications provider in Austria, the company offers mobile telephony, Internet, fixed network, television and business solutions from a single source. Since its launch in 2003, the company has been regarded as a pioneer in simple solutions for digital life through to M2M/IoT, network and IT services for companies. In addition to the largest shop network of all Austrian telecom operators and comprehensive customer service for private and business customers, Drei also has the country’s most powerful LTE network with a population coverage of 98 percent.
About ZTE Austria
Vienna as a hub for Eastern Europe: The Chinese technology group ZTE Corporation, a leading developer, manufacturer and supplier of telecommunications equipment and network solutions, has been serving more than 20 mobile network operators in the region from its Austrian location since 2009 – and the trend is rising. Its largest customers include domestic telecommunications companies such as Telekom Austria, Magenta Telekom and Hutchison Drei Austria. Austria is one of the most important locations of the ZTE Corporation and at the same time acts as a local hub for Eastern Europe.
About the Federal State of Carinthia
Carinthia, the southernmost province of Austria, combines the best know-how, high-quality technologies, a high quality of life, the best environmental conditions, a very good education, health and social system, the best tourist infrastructure – summer and winter – and an attractive mix of industries, all embedded in an innovative environment with very good logistics possibilities. Carinthia has seen a powerful development in technology, innovation and research in recent years. Carinthia is also a leader in the field of renewable energy. Internationally operating leading companies and research-intensive small and medium-sized enterprises are decisive for Carinthia’s technological competence.
Within the framework of digitisation, 5G, Smart City and autonomous driving and automated mobility, Carinthia has forward-looking research and development projects (R&D), such as “Smart Urban Region Austria Alps Adriatic (SURAAA)”, where Carinthia together with the Carinthia University of Applied Sciences and partners from industry is researching the topics of autonomous driving, Smart City, startups and digitisation.
With the innovative R&D project “Smart Urban Region Austria Alps Adriatic (SURAAA)”, Carinthia has been a pioneer, test and development region for automated mobility (First-/Last Mile) in public transport since 2017. With SURAAA, pdcp GmbH is implementing a unique initiative in the fields of business, tourism and mobility on behalf of the State of Carinthia and with partners from industry and research. The aim is to position itself throughout Europe as an innovative showcase region, to strengthen its attractiveness as a business location and to promote innovative projects in the areas of automated mobility, start-ups and digitisation. The SURAAA team is currently working and researching in the following areas: autonomous driving (focus or Austrian lead project), Smart City solutions (e.g. Smart Lighting), eTourism, Smart Farming and Startups. SURAAA started in September 2017 with a showcase digitisation and has officially started operations in 2018. In January 2018 the innovation room see:PORT was put into operation, since May 2018 an autonomous shuttle has been in daily test operation in Pörtschach at Lake Wörthersee – since May 2019 even on the federal highway. In June 2019, a test operation of automated flight taxis was presented – Carinthia will thus also become a model and test region for testing “passenger drones” in the areas of tourism, passenger and freight transport.