As this article is being written, a new 5G connection is being setup somewhere around the world as operator after operator are swiftly working to either roll it out or refine it.
But while the fifth generation of mobile networks has become the goal for many countries across the world, major telecom players around the world have started planning ahead for 6G.
Industry groups from both Japan and Finland announced on Tuesday a joint research to develop the sixth generation of mobile networks, in a bid to compete with Chinese companies who have already started forging 6G standards.
Both nations will cooperate through the Finnish 6G Flagship research program coordinated by the University of Oulu and the Beyond 5G Promotion Consortium of the Japanese Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications.
The Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was published in Tokyo in connection with the Global Digital Summit organized by The Nikkei, a Japanese financial media, and the Japanese Ministry of the Interior and Communications.
6G Flagship and the Beyond 5G Promotion Consortium are now launching research and development collaboration on 6G technology. “The goal is to contribute significantly to the global standardization and regulatory development of 6G technology,” University of Oulu said in a statement.
“Japan is a major global player in the development of wireless mobile technologies, and it is in Finland’s interest to expand the cooperation to themes where mutual competitive advantage can be achieved for 6G development. The importance of the collaboration is underlined by Japan’s decision earlier this spring to invest $2 billion in the development of 6G technologies,” the statement added.
This cooperation comes following $4.5 billion commitment by both Japan and the U.S. toward the advancement of next-generation communications technology, dated back in April. Extending the cooperation to “third-countries” to promote secure connectivity is seen helping in the competition with China to set global standards.
In addition to the University of Tokyo and the National Institute of Information and Communications Technology, the key member organizations of the Beyond 5G Promotion Consortium in Japan includes several Japanese telecommunications companies, operators, and the conglomerate SoftBank.
6G Flagship is a research, development and innovation program funded by the Academy of Finland and the University of Oulu for 2018−2026.