Although 5G network development is in the early days, North American carriers such as T-Mobile (NASDAQ:TMUS), Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ), AT&T (NYSE:T) and US Cellular (NYSE:USM) and tech companies are already thinking about 6G.
Next G Alliance to deliver 6G network
The companies have partnered to form the ATIS’s “Next G Alliance” focused on leading 6G in the future. This is an effort aimed at “the full lifecycle” of R&D, standardization, manufacturing, and marketing of 6G. Other founders include Bell Canada, Facebook, InterDigital, Ciena, Microsoft, Nokia, JMA Wireless, Samsung, Telus, Qualcomm, Telnyx, and Ericsson.
The strategic goals of the alliance include developing a roadmap for 6G, aligning US stakeholders on 6G priorities to influence funding and government policies, as well as identifying strategies that will ensure quick uptake of 6G in new markets and sectors. For most telcos, 5G is still the priority, and experts have warned that operators like AT&T and Verizon could take up to ten years to build their 5G across the country. This includes ensuring the network is working across various spectrum bands for macro and small cell sites and connecting to a range of devices.
6G network could be realized in 10 years
Although at some stage 5G was touted to be the “last G,” the establishment of the “Next G Alliance” dispels the notion and reaffirms the belief that the 6G network could be deployed in the next ten years. Most importantly, the alliance includes almost all 5G major players in North America, including large wireless carriers and equipment suppliers such as Nokia, Ericsson, and Samsung. Interestingly, companies banned from contracts in the US, such as Huawei, cannot be part of the alliance’s founding members.
ATIS CEO and President Susan Miller said that with countries across the globe progressing with 6G R&D initiatives, it is vital for North America to develop a collaborative roadmap in advancing its position as a leader in the next ten years. She added that Next G Alliance will deliver a foundation for establishing a marketplace for innovation in mobile technology.