The standardization of fifth generation (5G) communications has been completed, and the 5G network should be commercially launched in 2020. As a result, the visioning and planning of 6G communications has begun, with an aim to provide communication services for the future demands of the 2030s. Here, we provide a vision for 6G that could serve as a research guide in the post-5G era. We suggest that human-centric mobile communications will still be the most important application of 6G and the 6G network should be human centric. Thus, high security, secrecy and privacy should be key features of 6G and should be given particular attention by the wireless research community.
The next generation of wireless technology is expected to support speeds of a terabyte per second with an unprecedented level of capacity and latency
The rolling out of 5G services has triggered a wave of competition across the world and, more importantly, triggered a race to develop 6G.
An official Chinese research team on 6G was established in November. Developed economies such as the United States, Japan, South Korea and some European countries have started devising research and development plans for 6G, as the telecommunications sector has always been a hotspot for competition.
5G technology aims to create a comprehensive perceptual sensory system in which information and tools can be easily accessed. On the other hand, 6G will help build a perceptual nervous system integrating artificial intelligence (AI) and wireless cognition, which can give intelligent responses.
Compared with 5G technology, 6G will have lower latency, higher speed and more bandwidth. And this advanced technology will help connect the real world with the virtual digital world. It will also make product design, R&D and experiments significantly more efficient and greatly reduce their costs while making it possible to produce digital products in the physical world through high-tech including 3D printing.
Along with the seamless connection and intelligent coupling of the physical and digital worlds, all this will lead to a thorough reconstruction of the division of labour and societal co-operation.
Do We Really Need 6G?
5G is destined to make the internet more accessible for lots of people and to improve everything from entertainment to healthcare. The question of whether those areas will have room for improvement beyond 5G—and thus require the use of something better like 6G—is a resounding yes.
However, as fun as it might be to imagine a time where 5G is considered slow and 6G powers the world, if 5G pans out correctly, we might never need to come up with a new next-gen network.
The 6G concept could be avoided as long as manufacturers, regulators, and telecom companies keep improving 5G. If all of 5G’s pitfalls could be addresses on a frequent basis, new products could continuously flow into the market to take advantage of the ever-changing and constantly evolving new technology.