China Mobile, the world’s largest mobile carrier by subscriber numbers, is partnering with dozens of multinational telecom carriers and equipment makers to unveil a new white book on the next frontier in wireless technology: 6G Requirements and Design Considerations. This is part of China Mobile’s broader push to grow its influence on the global telecom 6G stage and have a bigger say in drafting future global standards for 6G.
The white book details the development path to achieve digital inclusion, energy efficiency, environmental sustainability, and flexible deployment, as well as new capability requirements for future use cases alongside proposed 6G system architecture and design considerations. The project is led by 16 telecom operators including China Mobile, with 23 equipment manufacturers and 13 research institutions also taking part.
6G technology is expected to have far lower latency, higher speeds, and more bandwidth than 5G, and as the next-generation mobile communication technology, it will integrate with advanced computing, big data, artificial intelligence, and blockchain. The world expects to see commercialization of 6G around 2030, and the 6G network will realize deep integration of the physical and virtual worlds, building a new world featuring the intelligent connection of everything.
China has already established the IMT-2030 (6G) Promotion Group, a flagship platform promoting 6G and international cooperation, and will speed up the R&D of 6G technology. The country is at the global forefront of 5G development, having set up more than 2.54 million 5G base stations as of February, with mobile subscribers of 5G surpassing 575 million. And China will build 600,000 5G base stations this year, said the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology.
It is important to balance the use of 5G and R&D of 6G, as long-term strategies are needed to develop both technologies. “Advancing the use of 5G is like building a good bridge and road for 6G,” said Wen Ku, secretary-general of the China Communications Standards Association. The European Union, the United States, Japan, South Korea, and other countries and regions have all initiated research on 6G, making it crucial for China to increase its partnerships and cooperation with foreign counterparts “to promote the formation of globally unified 6G standards,” according to Yi Zhiling, chief scientist at the China Mobile Research Institute.