MONTRÉAL – Bell Canada, Verizon, Vodafone, and Matsuko successfully conducted the first live transatlantic collaborative meeting connecting multiple holographic people in Canada, the US, and the UK using 5G and multi-access edge computing (MEC) technology.

Interacting with holograms of humans rather than avatars can provide a more personal experience for many applications such as remote healthcare, collaborative working, and education. The call was enabled by the speed of 5G combined with the quick response times of MEC, which moves the necessary computing closer to the edge of the network. This ensures a more reliable and consistent hologram by removing delays resulting from multiple hops between different locations and across the internet.

Holograms of employees located in three different countries were connected from Toronto, Canada, using Bell’s 5G network; New York in the US using Verizon’s 5G network; and London, UK, using Vodafone’s 5G network. They were created using Matsuko’s real-time software and just a single camera and were then streamed thanks to spatial computing, an immersive technology which combines virtual and augmented reality. Matsuko’s patented technology uses its presence app on a smartphone coupled with an XR (Extended Reality) headset to stream holograms instantly, creating the feeling that people are in the same room as you.

“Through its active participation in the 5GFF, Bell continues to support the developer community to access 5G MEC technologies and to ensure their solutions take full advantage of Bell’s 5G network in Canada, and to interoperate globally,” said Bell’s Costa Pantazopoulos, VP Product. “This holographic video meeting demo illustrates how Bell—with partners Verizon and Vodafone—is making it easier for developers to leverage 5G capabilities to innovate and achieve their application goals.”

“This demonstration shows how Verizon via the 5GFF continues to drive Open API industry momentum with real-life use cases while also accelerating ease of use for developers,” said John Nitti, SVP, Strategy, New Business and Partner Development for Verizon.

Giorgio Migliarina, Vodafone Group Director of Business Products and Services, said: “Multiparty holographic calling can make people feel more connected and productive, whether collaborating across classrooms, offices, hospitals, or at home. The smooth and natural movement of these holograms will become more prevalent with the growing availability of 5G and edge computing technology.”

Bell Canada, Verizon, and Vodafone came together under the auspices of industry body, the 5G Future Forum (5GFF), for this first-of-its-kind demonstration. They are showing the transatlantic conference meeting and the technology behind it at the Mobile World Congress exhibition in Las Vegas (Booth #1533, located in GSMAs Open Gateway Zone).