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The future of educational gaming

Until now, the world of mobile educational gaming has been largely closed off. Issues of quality and speed, the pervasiveness of inappropriate advertisements and a lack of trusted curation have all prevented children from meaningfully using mobile games to boost their learning.

However, the solutions to these challenges are already possible. Researchers at the 5G Research and Innovation Laboratory in King's College London, together with Ericsson and the gaming app provider Rooplay, are working to disrupt mobile gaming, using groundbreaking new technology to add tangible societal benefits, giving the control back to children and their parents.

The team is exploring how 5G can change the way games are played, dramatically reducing speed and memory issues while creating a safe, ad-free learning environment through curation and cloud technology. This is opening up possibilities for education, enabling children to access up-to-date and higher-quality content, anywhere in the world, faster than ever before.

Gaming on the go

This educational gaming use case of 5G is being pioneered in collaboration with Rooplay, a company seeking to remove restrictions on education by making games more accessible to children through cloud storage, and by creating an original platform of curated games that's safe, fast and fun.

Rooplay's state-of-the-art low-memory platform will allow educational institutions to address students' needs more flexibly and efficiently – a child will soon be able to put down their work at the end of the school day, and instantly pick up where they left off when they arrive home. The progress being made in the 5G Research and Innovation Lab is empowering Jason Williams, CEO of Rooplay, and his team to create a service that is truly disruptive and enabling for families all over the world.

Focus on: predictive preloading

The technology that will make all this possible comes in the form of the 5G predictive preloading being developed at King's College London. This innovation frees gamers from a single location, enabling them to load their devices at the touch of a button and remain uninterrupted on the move.

Handovers are a key element of cellular networks, responsible for keeping data sessions connected when a user moves from one site to another. Currently, handovers aren't as reliable as they could be, often resulting in frustrating speeds, loss of data and disconnection.

But with the emergence of 5G networks powerful enough to provide effortless handovers of data between cells, these issues will soon become problems of the past.

5G-enabled preloading technology is able to predict where a mobile user is likely to go, anticipate which cell they will move into, and then pre-emptively prepare the transfer of data. As technology moves to the cloud and time spent on mobile devices increases exponentially, the speed and efficiency generated by 5G predictive preloading will soon become absolutely crucial – and ubiquitous. Here, Peter Marshall, Principal 5G Lead with King's College London at Ericsson, discusses the game-changing research project.

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