Saturday, 29 February 2020

Japan already developing a plan for 6G

by Harry Baldock, Total Telecom
Thursday 23 January 20

The island nation is reportedly working on its 6G strategy for 2030, in spite of slow 5G roll out

There are reports that Japan is already looking beyond 5G to draw up plans for “post-5G” technology by 2030.   Japan’s Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications plans to create a joint government–civilian research society this January. The panel will focus on policy, technology and potential use cases.  …

There are reports that Japan is already looking beyond 5G to draw up plans for “post-5G” technology by 2030.
 
Japan’s Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications plans to create a joint government–civilian research society this January. The panel will focus on policy, technology and potential use cases.
 
Local media suggests that the first meeting could take place as early as next Monday.
 
Key players, such as NTT and Toshiba, will reportedly also be invited to share their views on 6G’s potential and related policies in June.
 
As always, speculation is rife about the potential of this future technology, with some suggesting that it could be ten times faster than 5G. Other benefits are likely to include the ability to smoothly connect multiple devices simultaneously, increased safety measures, and reduced power consumption.
 
Last year, the Japanese government pledged 220 billion yen (~$2 billion) to encourage private sector research in 6G technology.
 
“The smooth introduction of standards for next-generation wireless communications networks is indispensable to boosting Japan’s international competitiveness,” said Japan’s communications minister Sanae Takaichi.
 
This focus on 6G may come as something of a surprise to those who note that Japan’s 5G rollout has not been as rapid its local neighbours, China and South Korea, which both launched the technology last year.
 
Japan, on the other hand, has a plan to launch so-called “local 5G” this spring, with the infrastructure to be installed in some specific areas, such as selected hospitals and factories. 
 
NTT is also reportedly planning to launch a 5G video-streaming service in March.
 
Japan is not the first country to get the ball rolling with 6G development. Finland is one country notably already developing the technology – the University of Oulu published what has been described as 6G’s first white paper in September – and China announced its 6G ambitions just days after three of its mobile operators launched 5G last November. 
 
With the global focus on the 5G race, it is easy to forget that technology is a continuum, constantly evolving and inching ever closer redefining itself. The starting gun for the 6G race has already been fired and Japan, for one, is looking for a place on the podium.
 
 
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