According to the counterpoint report, 6G will basically increase the stake on the Wireless Spectrum from Gigabit throughputs on 5G to Terabits/second on 6G. Here, Throughput is amount of data that can be transferred from source to destination within a given timeframe. Anyway, the proposed range for the 6G spectrum is between 300GHz to 3THz(TeraHertz).
While we may not be seeing the commercial launch happening anytime before 2028 as predicted by Samsung, the research has already begun. In fact, giants like Huawei and Nokia are already advancing in their own way to accelerate the process. Either way, the leap from GHz(in 4G) to MHz(in 5G) and THz(in 6G) indeed looks exponential.
As for 6G devices, report says that it will require better power efficiencies, Line of Sight (LoS) channels, metamaterials for THz antenna arrays, improved AI for power optimization, and QoS(Quality of Service). Additionally, the Terahertz spectrum will pave way for holographic radio and ultra-massive MIMO technologies.
With Speeds getting increased this much(Terabits), the range of applications also gets widened. You can look at some key applications that will benefit from 6G(>1Tbps) below:
- 8K/16K Video streaming
- Transport Holographic Images/Video(HoloPortation) Wirelessly
- Microsecond latencies will enable Real-time Machine Control. Eg. Agricultural Robots
- Digital Twins/Replicas- Interaction between Digital and Physical world via Mixed Reality and AI
- Multi-Modal, Multi-Location 16K AR/VR applications
- 3D 4K Maps ADAS(Advanced Driver Assistance Systems)
As we all know, a network technology requires equipment, and hence, we should watch out for biggies like Ericsson, Samsung, Nokia, Huawei, ZTE, InterDigital, University of Oulu, SK Telecom, China Mobile, Docomo, AT&T in Network.
However, companies like Samsung, Qualcomm, LG, Apple, OPPO, Huawei, META, and others handle the device and components at a larger scale. Among this, Apple and Alphabet’s Google have already joined the “next G alliance”.
As mentioned above, China has gone a step further and launched the world’s first 6G satellite for terahertz communication. Nevertheless, We are still a few years away from seeing the real-time results of 6G which is expected to be 100-500x faster than 5G.