6G: Possibilities and Challenges

Introduction

The launch of the 5G wireless networks from 2018 ushered in a new world of wireless internet service. Data speed was boosted and dwarfed the already existing 4G internet speed, providing between 40 to 1100Mbps download speed and greatly improving the use of internet on mobile phones, tablets, hotspots, public infrastructure, automated cars, etc.

What is 6G?

6G is 6th generation wireless technology; following 4G (fourth generation) and 5G (fifth generation). It will use higher frequencies than the 5G network and cloud-based networking technology to deliver superior speed and micro-second latency. The technology will use these frequencies to measure absorption and adjust accordingly. 

6G: Possibilities 

Because it is still in research, it is difficult to say what 6G would look or feel like exactly, but experts say the internet speed will be like air - super fast. 

5G has a range of uses that the 6G network is likely to encompass, in addition to cellular surfaces and Wi-Fi implants. Experts project that through the use of technology like the millimetre wave spectrum (ultra high frequency) and beam forming, 5G data speed could actually reach a mind-blowing 10000Mbps (10Gbps) speed. But what's better than 10Gbps? The possibility of having up to 1Tbps (1,000,000 Mbps) internet speed, which 6G is likely to provide. 6G networks are also projected to support up to 10 million devices per square kilometer in contrast to the 1 million per square kilometer that the 5G can offer. 

With 6G, Artificial Intelligence is expected to become more grounded, with the use of AI in several industries such as transport with collaborative AI in self-driving cars, use of edge computing in network management, Wi-Fi implants and wearable in the health and wellness sector to obtain real-time information about the human body. The stock market and financial industry could also benefit from the 6G network through ultra fast data processing and improved market predictions based on the analysis of the processed data. 

6G will provide faster sampling rates than 5G as a result of the use of submillimeter waves to advance the development of wireless sensing technology. Gas and toxicity sensing, threat detection, feature and facial recognition, air quality measurements, etc can also be done using 6G which could help the government to assess the risk of natural disasters and the extent of global warming, and take effective preventive measures. 

6G: Challenges 

While 6G might sound like an amazing idea on paper, there are still a lot of hurdles to be overcome before it becomes mainstream. 

5G adoption is not global yet as many countries are only just catching up with 4G. A lot of time and resources would need to be dedicated to the adoption of 6G, which may be luxurious for developing countries, preventing them from enjoying the benefits of the revolutionary service.

The risk of security challenges in terms of ethical considerations, legal considerations and attack potentials such as API-based attacks, poisoning attacks, model stealing attacks, model inversion attacks, etc also pose a challenge to the new 6G network. Because of the wider coverage of the 6G network, these attacks are likely to be more devastating and far-reaching and could be debilitating to economies and industries if they occur. 

The concept of the 6G network is revolutionary and could usher the world into a new reality of the internet. However, it is also important for the full actualization of the potentials of the fourth and fifth generation networks to be reached in all countries to ensure that nobody is left behind. 


References 

https://www.highspeedinternet.com/resources/6g-internet

https://www.techtarget.com/searchnetworking/definition/6G

https://www.lifewire.com/6g-wireless-4685524

https://www.digitaltrends.com/mobile/what-is-6g/

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8914636/



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