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The 5G mobile communications standard is still in the early days of its deployment, ideas are starting to come to the fore to consider what the next generation, for instance 6G mobile communications. 6G will be able to meet the needs of the mobile communications when it is launched and for some while afterwards, then it will need to use up to the minute technology which is not available at the moment.
“It’s a little too early to talk about 6G.”
The format for 6G will depend on how 5G develops and where its shortfalls appear to be. Many different use cases that have been put forwards and only time will tell what the uptake is and how 5G is used currently. It is expected that it will be used increasingly for the IoT, as inter-vehicle communications for autonomous vehicles.
Apple Inc. recently started posting job ads seeking wireless research systems engineers for its sixth-generation, or 6G, cellular technology, just months after the company debuted its first slate of 5G-capable iPhones. Many industry leaders like AT&T Inc., Facebook Inc. and QUALCOMM Inc. are teaming up for 6G industry standards, from research and development.
The United Arab Emirates (UAE) leading telecom operator Etisalat Chief Technology Officer, Haitham Abdulazzak, revealed that the UAE is conducting research and developing international standards that are the main building blocks for the 6G ecosystem.
Etisalat are committed to bringing the latest technologies to UAE market to enable digital societies. The part of their vision and future technology planning, 6G is going beyond earth networks into space to enable new era of services and usage scenarios with terabyte data traffic resulting in extra ordinary human to machine interaction. Etisalat is upgrading tools and capabilities of its R&D center to enhance the contribution towards 6G global standardization within the international fora and alliances.
South Korea’s Ministry of Science and ICT established a 6G R&D implementation plan that calls for investing around $194 million by 2025 in six focus areas. South Korea is aiming to target leadership in international standards and patents, with an emphasis on active public-private cooperation in the early stages of 6G. South Korea plans to promote joint studies on core 6G technologies and spectrum, including 11 studies with the U.S., one study with China and two studies with Finland.
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Fraunhofer Institutes the German Research center are cooperating to conduct research activities on “6G” technology under the leadership of Fraunhofer IIS. The institute noted that future 6G technology will bring about another stride forward in the performance capability of mobile communications as regards peak throughput, user data rate, reliability, latency, energy efficiency and positioning accuracy. The Fraunhofer team is developing novel technologies that will be required for the future 6G mobile communications standard. With these basic technologies for 6G, they want to help strengthen the competitiveness of German industry in a key market for digitalization.
The promise of 6G is in the transformation of use cases targeted by 5G into a full integrated autonomy, enabling the move from science fiction to reality, robotic human’s operation, sophisticated human to human, human to machine and machine to machine relationship. 6G mobile communications is a very long way off, research and development as well as some thought of what 6G might look like is already starting, and the pace will only continue to increase.