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Testing Tech in Paradise: Queensland’s Sunshine Coast

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Queensland’s Sunshine Coast has invested in the latest in data networking technology, making it the ideal location for testing and trialling new technologies and next generation digital services.

The digital services and new technologies of tomorrow will demand the kind of bandwidth, low latency and accuracy that is beyond the capabilities of many data networks.

The new Maroochydore City Centre in the heart of the Sunshine Coast was designed with next gen digital connectivity at its core. The city-wide deployment of cutting-edge digital infrastructure makes this regional tech hub the perfect location for testing next gen technology.

This infrastructure presents a glimpse into the future of smart city environments around the world and provides a unique urban testbed environment for new digital services.

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Testing Tech in Paradise

Unleashing next generation digital services: Sunshine Coast’s urban testbed

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Cutting-edge digital infrastructure for tech testing

The Sunshine Coast has invested heavily in its digital infrastructure. The master-planned CBD is a smart city, equipped with the latest data networking technology including Wi-Fi 6 and a city-wide deployment of fibre broadband, with LoRaWAN wireless network access points and pole infrastructure.

The CBD is home to the Sunshine Coast International Broadband Network (SCIBN) cable landing station which houses the connection point for the SCIBN with landside communication networks, offering unparalleled options for low latency connectivity to Asia and North America.

NEXTDC SC1 is a Tier 3N+1 cutting-edge data centre and provides the perfect hub to connect with major networks and digital service providers offering unrivalled data capacity and lightning-fast speed via the SCIBN.

This infrastructure makes the Sunshine Coast CBD an ideal location for tech companies to test and trial their new technologies including AI automation testing, artificial intelligence software testing, augmented reality development and Internet of Things penetration testing.

Facilitating the uptake of AR and VR technologies

Data shows that the augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) markets in Australia and Oceania will experience an annual growth rate of 13.54% by 2028. The number of global users in this market segment is expected to reach 56.6 million in the same timeframe.

These services are using high definition audio and video streams and location-based services to revolutionise industries and consumer behaviour. Higher GPS accuracy, quicker asset ID, faster fault resolution and risk mitigation create meaningful new business opportunities and consumer experiences.

For example, as an alternative to intensive training, staff in utilities infrastructure maintenance can use augmented reality and smart glasses to overlay information into a technician’s field of vision. The combination of image recognition technology with high speed, low latency bandwidth available in the Maroochydore CBD enables the development of precise augmented reality services that present detailed information to the field technician. Alternatively, smart glasses can relay what they are seeing to a remote location where it can be viewed by a more experienced technician.

LoRaWAN IoT network

Maroochydore City Centre’s LoRaWAN network provides low power data network connectivity that covers almost 100% of the development area. This network is ideal for the iot pentesting and deployment of internet-of-things applications such as sensors, security, wearable technology and other devices.

The combination of Wi-Fi 6 and LoRaWAN networks offers a unique opportunity to collect vehicle telemetry data at different levels of detail. With real-time access to this data, network
managers can create a full digital twin of an entire urban environment.

The ability to model the network with high accuracy in software creates the opportunity to safely test different scenarios based on real world data for transport management and other sectors that rely on real-time asset tracking.

If a company does not want to be limited by the current Wi-Fi6 and Sunshine Coast Council active network infrastructure, there is spare fibre infrastructure to every smart light pole within the City Centre and every commercial building.

Real-world testing for a range of industry sectors

The impact of these new technologies is being felt across a broad range of industries, including transport and logistics, sports, tourism and leisure, health and aged care, utilities and infrastructure plus many more.

Sunshine Coast Council can provide access to a real-world test environment for technology and software developers, providers and manufacturers to the Maroochydore City Centre infrastructure to test and develop their products, including examples outlined below.

High-definition virtual reality for remote collaboration: Existing videoconferencing systems rarely match the experience of being there in person. Using virtual reality solutions can place all participants in a shared virtual environment. The Maroochydore City Centre provides options for testing these experiences outdoors.

Geofencing technology and pedestrian safety: Testing geofencing services using the Wi-Fi 6 network in the Maroochydore City Centre offers a unique opportunity to understand the possibilities of this technology, while also providing a high speed communication channel to escooter and electric bike riders.

Ubiquitous broadband communication in congested environments: With real-time monitoring of mobile devices, it’s now easier to track and manage the movement of large crowds and redirect people to less congested areas to ease overcrowding. This will be critical for the 2032 Olympic and Paralympic Games. With Wi-Fi 6, the Maroochydore CBD is an ideal location to test new tech for crowd management.

Whether it’s IoT devices, sports-tech applications or next-gen consumer electronics, the Maroochydore City Centre’s robust digital backbone ensures companies can run real-world tests without any hiccups.

Quality of life and cost-effectiveness

Let’s not forget the lifestyle advantages. The Sunshine Coast was recently recognised as a UNESCO Biosphere and offers a high quality of life with its beautiful beaches, ancient rainforests, world-class food and agribusiness industry and thriving cultural scene.

But this idyllic location offers more than just stunning beaches and a laid-back lifestyle; it’s one of Australia’s fastest-growing tech hubs. Companies setting up shop here will find it easier to attract top tech talent who are drawn to the lifestyle as much as the work itself.

The Sunshine Coast offers a cost-effective alternative to the capital cities without compromising the quality of resources or infrastructure. Lower costs for office space, utilities and even talent can translate into significant savings, allowing companies to allocate funds to R&D and other critical areas.

Case study:
The Connected Worker

This video features a case study called “The Connected Worker” in which Sunshine Coast Council, in partnership with The AVR Lab, has successfully tested augmented reality wearables and software using the Maroochydore City Centre’s high speed/low latency WiFi 6 Network.

Play Video
Play Video

Business testimonial:
The AVR Lab story

In this video, The AVR Lab discuss the benefits of testing and trialling new tech for their business and their experience of working with Sunshine Coast Council.

Make your mark ... get set ... grow!
Elevate your sports tech game.

What makes the Queensland’s Sunshine Coast truly special for tech entrepreneurs is its upcoming role as a sports tech playground, thanks to the Brisbane 2032 Olympic and Paralympic Games.

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The future is bright and it's shining right here.

Ready to join the tech revolution on the Sunshine Coast?