Network operators Ericsson and Telia, alongside Swedish transport company Einride, have partnered to develop eco-friendly and sustainable self-driving trucks powered by 5G at a DB Schenker facility in Jönköping, Sweden.
According to Ericsson, the end goal "is to power an all-electric, autonomous transport ecosystem that takes fleet management to the next level". It also stated that 5G is key to develop sustainable transport to provide connectivity and reliability required to securely pioneer autonomous trucks.
To develop the system Ericsson Radio System and Ericsson Cloud Core in conjunction with Telia will be providing 5G connectivity for Einride's driverless truck, T-pod, that, according to a report from Einride, is predicted to be on the road later this year. Ericsson predicts that Einride's T-pod vehicles, when powered by 5G, can supersede more than 60% of today's transport with a cost-competitive and sustainable alternative.
Visit Innovation Enterprise's Chief Innovation Officer Summit in New York on December 6–7, 2018
Einride CEO and founder Robert Falck said: "Our driving mission is to lead the sustainable transition of road freight transportation. 5G provides the connectivity and reliability we need to safely introduce the T-pod onto public roads, paving the way for a 90% reduction in CO2 emissions and the elimination of nitrogen oxide emissions."
Additionally, of the partnership, Ericsson's head of business area technologies and new businesses Åsa Tamsons said: "There is a paradigm shift going on in the transport industry. 5G, with its high-data speeds and ultra-low latency, is powering a new world of autonomous vehicles that takes fleet management to the next level.
"Einride's transportation solution is a perfect example of how 5G can drive cost efficiencies, improve safety, and create a sustainable future".
A recent report from Ericsson that explored 5G business potential indicated the technology was a $619bn revenue opportunity for telecom operators by 2026. The new partnerships also follows Ericsson's strategic partnership with Fujitsu last month to deliver end-to-end 5G network services in Japan.