With all of these 5G phone announcements and no live 5G networks, Brits can’t help but feel a bit left out of the new mobile broadband revolution.
However, not all beings on our little islands are missing out on the next-gen mobile revolution. In an experiment, fifty-odd dairy cows in Shepton Mallet, England, have been fitted with 5G smart collars, as well as ear tags that monitor their health.
Those 5G collars interact with a robotic milking system. When the cows feel the need to dispense some of their calcium-rich, creamy goodness they can approach gates, which will automatically open up for them.
From here, the robotic milking machine will be able to determine which of the 50 cows is approaching to help it precisely latch on to those teats. For their troubles, members of the Friesian herd will earn a reward in the shape of a bite to eat. Meanwhile, the ear-tags will monitor the cows for any signs of distress during the process and alert the farmers.
Related: What is 5G?
The experiment is taking place at the Agricultural Engineering Precision Innovation Centre, which is funded by the UK government.
“We are testing the ability of 5G to transmit the data from our sensors much quicker, and not via the farm’s PC and a slow broadband internet connection,” project manager Duncan Forbes told Reuters. “And the significance of that is it means that this sort of technology could be taken up … not just on farms but on rural communities right across the country.”
Elsewhere on the innovative farm, cows benefit from automated brushes that begin rotating when they rub against them, in need of a scratch. There’s also some curtains with sensors that’ll open and close in various weather conditions.
Nick Chrissos, of Cisco Systems, which set up the 5G test bed, said: “We can connect every cow, we can connect every animal on this farm. That’s what 5G can do for farming — really unleash the power that we have within this farm, everywhere around the UK and everywhere around the world.”
Are you upset that livestock are using 5G before you? Don’t have a cow, man, tweet us @TrustedReviews instead.