Access and Feeds

6G: The Race to Terabit Communications

By Dick Weisinger

While 5G technology may be just starting to take hold, the conversation about 6G is starting. 6G promises terahertz electronics, and research is being done by Finland, Korea, China, Japan, India, and the US, although the technology may still be a decade away — think sometime around 2030.

Highlights of the goals of 6G technology include:

  • Data transmission rates over 100 Gbps, x100 capacity (10x faster than 5G)
  • Frequency 10x higher than 5G
  • Will work with edge devices and use no or low power
  • Very low latency with reponses faster than 1ms
  • 99.999999% accuracy. Secure, private, safe, resilient
  • Connectivity of 10 million devices per square km

Peter Vetter, head of access and devices at Nokia Oyj’s research arm Bell Labs, said that “this endeavor is so important that it’s become an arms race to some extent. It will require an army of researchers on it to remain competitive.”

Vikrant Gandhi, senior industry director of information and communications technologies at consultancy firm Frost & Sullivan in the U.S, said that “unlike 5G, North America will not let the opportunity for a generational leadership slide by so easily this time. It is likely that the competition for 6G leadership will be fiercer than that for 5G.”

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