Indiana Launches 5G Zone to Accelerate Innovation

Purdue University


Indianapolis is one of only two US-based metro areas selected to launch both AT&T and Verizon 5G broadband networks

Cynthia Sequin/Purdue Research Foundation

Participants of the Indy 5G Summit, held earlier this summer, laid the groundwork to establishing Indianapolis as one of only two metro areas in the U.S. selected for the launch of both AT&T and Verizon 5G broadband networks.

INDIANAPOLIS - Indiana will launch a new 5G hub to drive the testing and development of 5G-enabled technologies and assist businesses and innovators by propelling research and development with faster speeds, lower data latency and increased reliability.

As one of only two metro areas in the U.S. selected for the launch of both AT&T and Verizon 5G broadband networks, Indiana's capital city is uniquely positioned to be at the center of global advancements and growth in 5G.

Businesses, researchers and universities are invited to develop next-generation technological advancements in the Indianapolis-based site. For information, visit

"As Indiana's pro-growth business climate continues to gain recognition around the globe, we're committed to enhancing our connectivity and investing in emerging infrastructure like 5G in order to remain competitive and propel our economy forward into the 21st century," said Indiana Gov. Eric J. Holcomb. "With the launch of the Indiana 5G Zone, along with the state's innovation-driven economic development tools, Indiana will be able to attract more diverse companies in high-growth industries while also leading in the development of 5G-enabled technologies."

The Indiana 5G Acceleration Zone will be co-located with Eleven Fifty Academy at 151 W. Ohio St. The 5G lab will occupy 3,000 square feet of the 24,000-square-foot space. Eleven Fifty Academy is a nonprofit educational entity in downtown Indianapolis that helps professionals upskill and launch careers in technology. The academy will integrate the 5G infrastructure within its immersive coding and cybersecurity training programs.

The Indiana 5G Zone is being established by the Indiana 5G Forum, which includes several stakeholders, including AT&T, Verizon, Purdue University, Eleven Fifty Academy, Indiana IoT Lab - Fishers, Battery Innovation Center, Wabash Heartland Innovation Network, Indiana University and the University of Notre Dame. The Indiana 5G Zone is sponsored as part of a strategic initiative established in partnership with the Indiana Economic Development Corporation (IEDC) to leverage Indiana's developing digital infrastructure in order to catalyze innovation and support rapidly-developing companies. The Indiana 5G Forum will have staff and resources on site to provide support to Indiana's entrepreneurial community.

"5G is a key priority for Purdue Engineering's Initiative in Autonomous and Connected Systems. With unique 5G assets and partnership opportunities, Indy is speedy. And the Indiana 5G Zone will provide a unique, open innovation platform for 5G acceleration in the U.S.," said Mung Chiang, Purdue University's John A. Edwardson Dean of the College of Engineering.

Once launched, businesses, universities and research institutions will be able to lease lab space at the facility, leveraging its unique 5G network infrastructure to develop and test new technologies, products or service applications, while also having access to shared spaces for programming and events.

"The 5G Zone is a direct result of the Indy 5G Summit, held earlier this year in Indianapolis, and uniquely brings together industry, academia and government in one location to advance this game-changing technology and place Indiana as a world leader in 5G technology," said Scott Jones, founder of Eleven Fifty Academy. "The ability to upskill in-career professionals, entrepreneurs, educators and government leaders about all 5G has to offer gives Indiana a big advantage."

The Indy 5G Summit, convened government, industry and academic leaders from across the state to collaborate and grow opportunities in 5G. 5G is the next generation of wireless technology, offering businesses and consumers enhanced connectivity, reliability, data latency, and capacity and coverage among devices and technologies.

With speeds up to 100 gigabits per second, more than 20 times faster than current networks, 5G will help companies propel innovation and R&D and improve capabilities in industries ranging from agbiosciences to health care. For example, 5G technology seeks to improve how manufacturers capture, process and transfer data through Internet-of-Things devices.

Indiana is committed to embracing disruptive technology like 5G to bolster its strategic industries and position the state for long-term global competitiveness and economic growth. With the launch of the Indiana 5G Zone, the state will gain another tool to support innovation and drive tech sector growth and job creation in central Indiana, which grew at more than double the U.S. average during 2016 and 2017, ranking sixth across the U.S. and Canada.

"A big advantage to having the 5G Zone co-locate in Eleven Fifty Academy is the opportunity for collaborative research, training and project development," said Sean Hendrix, managing director of Indiana 5G: Where Speed Matters. "We invite anyone - locally, statewide and beyond - who is interested in partnering with and learning more about 5G networking."

Hendrix will be one of a team of professionals on site at the academy.

The IEDC will provide matching funds to support company innovation and research and development through the state's 21st Century Research and Technology Fund, which promotes economic growth and innovation-driven, public-private partnerships in Indiana.

The Indy 5G Acceleration Zone will be administered by the Indiana 5G Forum, a newly formed business unit of Purdue Research Foundation, which supports the state's efforts to foster innovation and entrepreneurship through a variety of programs and initiatives, such as making direct investments into startups and supporting public-private partnerships to advance research and development.

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