ITS America tells Congress 5G Connectivity can be “transformational”

ITS America’s President & CEO Shailen Bhatt has told the US Congress that fifth-generation wireless technologies have the potential to deliver a transportation system that is safer, offers more choices, and is more inclusive.

At the Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee’s hearing, “Winning the Race to 5G and the Next Era of Technology Innovation in the United States,” Bhatt made the case that 5G has the capability of revolutionising the way people, goods, services, and information move in the 21st century.

He noted that while the world is awash in a sea of big data, 5G has the speed and bandwidth to convert that data into actionable information that will in turn help reduce crashes and operate transportation systems more effectively.

“While vehicles can communicate with each other and all system users today (V2X communications), it will only get easier with 5G and other next generation wireless technologies,” Bhatt said. “With high-speed communications among devices, vehicles, and infrastructure as well as pedestrians, we can create a much safer environment in metro and rural areas in which everyone can see all users – even if they happen to be around a corner.”

Bhatt told the Committee it is imperative to preserve the spectrum dedicated for safety critical communications in the 5.9 GHz band for V2X. 

In addition to improving safety, high-speed connectivity will boost Mobility on Demand by giving people real-time information that will allow them to make better transportation choices. Just last week, ITS America outlined plans for its Mobility on Demand Alliance at an event on Capitol Hill.

Bhatt also touched on international implications. “Other countries have been very clear about their intent to make forays into the automotive and information technology sectors. It is imperative for the United States to maintain its leadership role and provide safer and more inclusive communities,” he said.

Bhatt’s full testimony is available here.

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