Island to benefit from new digital partnerships
DIGITAL Jersey’s launch of its new internet-of-things hub at Red Houses coincided with the signing of two memorandums of understanding with University College London (UCL) and Rothamsted Research in the UK, both of which could provide wide-reaching benefits for Island businesses and the economy.
The newly launched Digital Jersey Exchange (DJX) is a collaborative work space focusing on opportunities in internet-enabled devices. UCL is looking to bring their research students to the Island to use it as a testbed for 5G applications.
UCL Professor Izzat Darwazeh, head of the communications and information systems group at UCL, looks after one of the biggest concentrations of young communications researchers in the UK.
He was very positive about the partnership, saying: ‘I have been to Singapore and been to South Korea, but I’ve never seen such a complete system of fibre as I have in this island. You have an amazing telecoms infrastructure, maybe unparalleled in the world, and so we could do experiments here that we could not do anywhere else.’
Professor Darwazeh said he was also impressed by the level of activity in Jersey’s IoT space, as well as the efforts being made to retrain people and the level of engagement with schools. He also said that in a few years, IoT would be everywhere, in the same way that mobile technology developed quickly and became ubiquitous.
Rothamsted Research is a world-leading agricultural science research centre. They are looking to use Jersey as a testbed for agricultural science solutions which it is hoped will not only put Jersey on the map but also help with local productivity challenges.
Speaking at the opening of DJX, Senator Lyndon Farnham, who has responsibility for digital, alluded to the impressive growth in the sector and said it was ‘important to embrace our traditional industries on this journey’.
Digital Jersey CEO Tony Moretta said word was spreading that Jersey was a perfect testbed opportunity. The new DJX hub provides a collaborative workspace with video wall, demo rooms and workshop space, as well as desks.