Airtel, TCS partner for 5G-based remote robotic ops

Bharti Airtel, TCS partner for 5G-based remote robotic operations

Representative picture. Credit: Reuters Photo

Telecom operator Bharti Airtel and IT major Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) have joined hands to build a 5G-based remote working technology using robotics, according to a joint statement.

TCS during the trials has successfully tested two use cases of its Neural Manufacturing solutions on Airtel's 5G testbed in Manesar – remote robotics operations, and vision-based quality inspection, the statement claimed.

"The 5G ecosystem will open limitless possibilities for enterprises to enhance productivity and serve their customers even better with digitally enabled applications. We are delighted to work with TCS as our strategic technology partner to start testing real life 5G applications of the future. This also offers tremendous learnings across the value chain and lays a solid foundation for future application roadmap," Bharti Airtel chief technology officer Randeep Sekhon said.

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The remote robotics solutions will target enterprises that operate in potentially hazardous environments like mining, oil & gas fields etc. "We will continue to build new, differentiated capabilities into TCS' Neural Manufacturing suite of solutions, harnessing the power of machine vision, machine intelligence and 5G to reimagine and redefine the way smart factories operate. Our partnership with Airtel to deploy and validate these innovative use cases on their 5G network serves as a proof point of the transformative power of these technologies," TCS global head of manufacturing and utilities, Susheel Vasudevan said.

In June, Airtel and TCS announced a strategic partnership for implementing 5G network solutions for India. Tata Group has developed O-RAN (Open Radio Access Network)-based Radio and core elements and integrated a totally indigenous telecom stack, while Airtel will pilot and deploy this indigenous solution as part of its 5G rollout plans in India.

Open RAN or open radio access network architecture is an industry terminology for interoperability and standardisation of radio access network elements including products and software from various vendors.

The commercial deployment of Tata Group developed O-RAN was to start from January 2022, but uncertainty around it remains because of deferment in the 5G spectrum auction plan of the government. The government has extended the 5G trial period till May 2022.

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