Globally unified 6G innovation system should be achieved this year: analysts
Published: Mar 22, 2023 08:52 PM
A concept photo of 6G technology Illustration: VCG

A concept photo of 6G technology Illustration: VCG

With the global race for the cutting-edge 6G technology in progress, experts and researchers are calling for a unified 6G innovation system to be established this year, a key window for the technology's progress.

During the Global 6G Conference, which is being held in Nanjing, capital of East China's Jiangsu Province from Wednesday to Friday, top domestic and foreign industry experts are discussing the development and vision of 6G. They're focusing on how 6G, as the super infrastructure of the future digital world, can achieve the ultimate blend of performance, connectivity, computing, intelligence and security. 

They are also exploring intelligent connections between humans and machines.

Despite the lack of a confirmed global vision for 6G, there are some common understandings. The revolutionary technology, expected to be 10-100 times faster than 5G in terms of data transmission speed, will integrate with advanced computing, big data, artificial intelligence (AI) and blockchain, providing applications that fell short of expectations in the 5G era.

"At present, 6G is focusing from multi-point technology to key technology, and the work related to system solution design and prototype verification testing has gradually become the focus," said Chih-Lin I, chief scientist of the China Mobile Research Institute, ahead of the conference. 

At the same time, the industry has begun to carry out some standardized work on quasi-6G technologies, Chih said.

"In this important development window, we need to insist on pursuing a globally unified 6G innovation system and 5G internationalization route," the scientist said.

Xiang Ligang, director-general of the Beijing-based Information Consumption Alliance, told the Global Times that 2023 will be crucial for 6G as its vision is expected to be established this year. 

During this process, various countries will present their research and explain demand for the technology.

"This will affect the development of 6G itself and also determine who has the right to define 6G standard formulation," Xiang noted, adding that whether China can seize the critical year of 6G is significant for it to maintain a dominant position in the communications field.

China's clout in the telecoms sector has been demonstrated in the 5G era with an array of leading firms such as Huawei Technologies and China Mobile, which are also playing a leading role in promoting the R&D of 6G.

China Mobile issued the 6G Requirements and Design Considerations, a white paper, together with 16 international telecom operators through the Next Generation Mobile Networks Alliance on Tuesday. The operator has published 31 white papers and 60 high-quality papers on 6G, ranking first among global telecom operators, it said.

"Despite fierce competition worldwide, China still has some first-mover advantages in 6G based on the accumulated technology of its companies," Xiang said. The Chinese government also attaches great importance to the next-generation technology.

China will formulate an industry development plan to promote research and innovation of 6G mobile technologies, Jin Zhuanglong, minister of the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, said on March 1. 

The country has established the IMT-2030 (6G) Promotion Group, the flagship platform in China that promotes 6G and international cooperation, and will speed up the R&D of 6G technology, he said.

Intelligent interaction and integrated space-air-ground networks via satellites are considered to be two major directions to make breakthroughs among 6G applications, according to Xiang. 

Industry observers said that satellite internet is the key development direction, where the US has taken an early step based on its powerful satellite design, manufacturing and launch capabilities.

Global Times