Telecommunications group Vodafone wants to build a mobile communications development center in Dresden. After discussions with eight cities in Europe, the Saxon state capital was chosen as the location, Vodafone announced in Dusseldorf on Sunday. More than 200 jobs are to be created at the new center in the coming years. No details were given about when construction will start, nor about the investment volume. "The decision is a further strong commitment to the industrial location in the heart of Europe", said Hannes Ametsreiter, head of Vodafone Germany.
"The future of digitization is being thought out in Germany"
Digital applications for transport, agriculture, healthcare and buildings are just some of the areas under consideration. The technology is initially being developed for the 5G mobile communications standard, whose network Vodafone has been rolling out in Germany since last year, competing with Deutsche Telekom and Telefonica (o2) in the process. In addition, the competence center will deal with the 6. generation of mobile communications (6G). The development of this radio standard is still in its infancy. Roughly speaking, every ten years a new mobile communications standard is ready for the market – the designated successor to 5G could be ready by about 2030.
With 6G, the transmission speed was increased significantly and the already low latency – i.e. the response time – was shortened. In dealing with rapidly increasing data volumes and new technical possibilities such as virtual reality and autonomous driving vehicles, 6G would be another rough step forward in the digital age. Vodafone manager Ametsreiter sees the decision to locate in Dresden as a "signal for this country": "The future of digitization is being conceived in Germany."
Key function for 6G
Vodafone has its mobile phone development units at various locations in Europe, the new Dresden location is to be given a group-internal key function for 6G for the whole of Europe.
According to the press release, the German Minister of Economics, Peter Altmaier, buried the decision. "The attractiveness of Dresden and Saxony as a region of innovation is once again visible here", the CDU politician announced. "And the decision shows: Germany is and will remain a high-tech location." 5G and 6G are future technologies that are fundamental for the further digitization of industry, especially of the automotive industry, which is so important for Germany. Saxony’s Minister President Michael Kretschmer (CDU) spoke of a "Excellent news".