While there is still a lot of innovation ahead for 5G, many projects identified as “Next G” and “6G” are already underway globally with significant leadership from the Americas. 5G Americas announced the publication of a new white paper entitled Mobile Communications Towards 2030, which details how the industry will continue to build and evolve wireless communications networks for consumers and enterprises beyond what we know as 5G today.
Chris Pearson, president of 5G Americas, said, “While 5G is at the beginning of a long era of innovation with a full road map of exciting enhancements, the work to research and study the next generation of possibilities is already underway. It is imperative that the Americas region build and maintain leadership, gathering input from wireless operators and vendors, as well as academia, other vertical industries and the government.”
Emerging next generation wireless communications use cases are still several years away from being formulated but include some thrilling opportunities. Early use cases may include multi-sensory telepresence and immersion via extended reality (XR), as well as use of digital twins in Industry 4.0’s cyber-physical systems. Additional use cases may include holographic teleportation, tactile and haptic communications and many more.
Wireless impacts on vertical industries may include opportunities in precision crops and livestock, biosensor monitoring in health care, advanced driver assist and autonomous driving for transportation systems, first responder systems that allow rapid data collection from sensors and real-time situational awareness, and government and defense systems utilizing ubiquitous connectivity.
Additionally, the white paper provides insight into the vision and requirements necessary for next generation wireless networks to come to life. Emerging applications may require very high data rates into the Tbps range for digital twins and tactile feedback, extremely wide coverage for rural or defense needs, and reliability up to “seven nines” (99.99999 percent uptime) for intense remote control and digital twin requirements.
Mobile Communications Towards 2030 examines the following areas:
- Activities in North America in context of next generation wireless work
- Review of global activities (China, Japan, Europe, Korea, Taiwan and India)
- Use Cases (multi-sensory telepresence and immersion, Industry 4.0, digital twins and advances in different vertical industries)
- Technology requirements and network evolution
- Technology enablers and trends
- North American leadership.
Brian Daly, assistant vice president, Standards & Industry Alliances, AT&T and technical work group co-leader on the paper commented, “While 5G is still early in its lifecycle and is being evolved and enhanced through upcoming 3GPP releases while worldwide deployment continues, we recognize the need to begin to promote early commitment to creating a 5G to Next G marketplace and to ensure North America continues to lead in technology development. The groundwork for the next exciting chapter of wireless revolution is beginning as academia and US-based alliances are looking at advancing technology, along with the US government focused in forging fruitful partnerships with private sector.”
Swaminathan “Swami” Arunachalam, senior director, 6G Research and Industry Alliances, North America, Nokia, and 5G Americas group co-leader further added, “It is early in the cycle for 6G research. Technologies relevant in the 6G era like network disaggregation and programmability across the end-to-end system are also planned to be studied and deployed in the context of 5G-Advanced. These are important stepping stones towards the 6G era which will comprise of new and additional technologies such as THz radio technologies, communication and sensing capabilities, sub-networks."