Chinas science and technology ministry announced yesterday (Nov. 6) that it has formed two teams to oversee the research and study of 6G, marking the official start of a state-backed effort to accelerate the development of the technology, according to the notice (link in Chinese). One team consists of government departments who will be in charge of pushing through the execution of 6G technology, while the other consists of 37 experts from universities, science institutions and corporations, who will provide technical advice for the governments major decisions on 6G.
5G and 6G refer to the fifth and sixth generation of mobile wireless networks. While 5G is known to have data transmission speeds at least 10 times greater than 4G, rolled out in 2009, its too early to say what 6G could be, or what sorts of technologies it would advance.
After all, we hardly know what life with 5G is going to be like yet. Chinese telecom carriers rolled out their commercial 5G plans only this month, with the cheapest option costing just under $20. China has also planned to activate over 130,000 5G base stations by the end of the year, helping it to build one of the largest 5G networks globally, an achievement the government prioritized (member exclusive). South Korea launched the service in April, and has also been at the forefront of developing 5G. The US, meanwhile, is playing catch up.
While usersmainly gamersmay notice faster speeds in the initial phase, it could take a decade to see the more dramatic changes businesses are hoping for, far beyond what happens on personal mobile devices.
Utill, the Chinese ministry said its determined to lay out the groundwork for developing 6G. The technology should be treated as a priority at this crucial stage of the development of the nation, said Wang Xi, vice minister of the science ministry. The ministry will start to draft a roadmap for developing 6G, as well as exploring the possible applications of the technology, it said.