The evolution of mobile communication technology from 1G to 5G has been significant. While 1G initially provided only voice communications, 2G introduced mobile voice services and some digital messaging services. The introduction of 3G brought mobile Internet, while 4G provided the best solution for mobile Internet and drove the development of applications such as smart homes and telemedicine.
While 5G continues to be rapidly commercialized, major countries and regions around the world are already beginning to explore the next generation of mobile communications technology, 6G. The speaker’s country has also proposed a plan to “prospect the layout of sixth-generation mobile communication (6G) network technology reserves, increase support for research and development of 6G technology, and actively participate in promoting international 6G standardization.”
While 5G brought about the “Internet of Everything” in a two-dimensional world, 6G aims to create an “intelligent connection of everything” in a three-dimensional world. However, 6G is not simply about increasing the speed of communications transmission. Rather, it integrates various network access methods such as cellular, satellite, drones and visible light communications to create an integrated air-space-sea-ground network that enables seamless global connectivity.
Compared to 5G, 6G offers 10 times faster peak rate and 2 to 3 times better overall user experience. In addition, 6G’s theoretical downlink data rate is expected to be 1 terabit per second (1Tbps or 1000Gbps), with extremely low latency measured in microseconds. To achieve such performance levels, higher frequency bands and wider spectrum will be needed, requiring spectrum resource support. In terms of spectrum, 6G will support all the frequency bands used by 5G – low-band (< 1GHz), mid-band (1-7GHz), and millimeter wave (24-100GHz) – while expanding to 3000GHz terahertz. This broader use of spectrum will provide better coverage and higher reliability for 6G networks.
Advances in 6G technology will far surpass those of 5G, with improved transmission rates, end-to-end delays, reliability and link density. In addition, 6G will integrate artificial intelligence technology to build an intelligent network and bridge the gap between the physical and virtual worlds. This will enable seamless connectivity between people, machines and things, ultimately paving the way for the Metaverse.
The ongoing development of 6G technology is likely to create new opportunities and markets for the chip industry. Therefore, it is imperative for researchers and developers to continue to research and innovate in the field of mobile technology in order to stay ahead of the curve. As 6G terminals become more prevalent, chip integration is becoming more complex, requiring high integration, miniaturization, low power consumption, and heterogeneous chip devices. The use of System on Chip (SoC) and System in Package (SiP) solutions can innovate semiconductor technologies and device materials to deliver greater application value.
In the 6G era, terminal manufacturers will also seek to advance chip technology and target 1nm or even smaller nodes. This will enable faster and more efficient data processing and pave the way for further technological innovation.