The UK’s first Edge innovation lab - which allows businesses to test the possibilities of the next generation in network technology - has opened in Salford. Vodafone revealed the Edge Innovation lab at HOST, the Home of Skills & Technology, in MediaCity on Wednesday 11 January.
As part of the plan to turn Manchester into a Northern digital powerhouse and stimulate economic diversity in the city-region, businesses are invited down to test the Multi-access Edge Compute (MEC) and what it can offer in terms of next-generation technology.
Councillor Eamonn O’Brien, portfolio holder for for Education, Skills, Work, Apprenticeships and Digital at the GMCA, said: “We can in this part of the country be as exciting and innovative and creative as any other part.”
Mo Isap, CEO of IN4, the operator of HOST said: “We have not had the fair, level playing field from an investment point of view, from an infrastructure point of view, as maybe other regions have. What we have to work on is next year to secure more outcomes, more investment so we can grow it, so we can evolve it.”
Mr Isap added driving innovation in this way in Manchester could lead the area to become the centre for the rest of the world.
We went down on the lab’s opening day to see the space for ourselves, get a glimpse of new cutting edge technology and speak to people involved.