KT to run 5G-based autonomous shuttle bus to prove commercial potential

South Korea-based operator KT will be running a 5G-powered self-driving shuttle service in the central city of Sejong, in a pilot project to demonstrate the commercialisation of autonomous buses.

KT – the carrier formerly known as Korea Telecom – alongside Seoul-based self-driving vehicle tech provider Unmanned Solutions, had previously announced a partnership in April in order to develop a 5G-based virtual control tower for self-driving vehicles.

As reported by Aju Business Daily, the two companies will modify a 1.3km long street by the end of 2019 and begin testing level 4 autonomous shuttles during the first half of 2020. For the first time in South Korea, KT will be testing a new platform that requires no control tower on a six-seat shuttle bus.

Earlier this month, SK Telecom, Korea National Policy Agency and the Korea Road Traffic Authority signed a Memorandum of Understanding in order to cooperate in sharing traffic signal information and T Map data and jointly develop 5G technologies for transportation infrastructure. As per the agreement, SK Telecom will advance its T Map service by making use of KNPA’s traffic signal information by displaying the signal information on T Map routes and enhancing the accuracy of arrival time prediction. KNPA will utilize the T Map traffic data provided by SK Telecom to upgrade its traffic signal system.

Ryu Young-sang, Head of MNO Business of SK Telecom said: “We expect to expand our 5G, mobility, and B2B businesses through collaboration with KNPA and KoROAD. SK Telecom will endeavor to secure competitiveness in infrastructure and service for autonomous driving in collaboration with various business partners.”

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