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Next G Alliance launches Technical Work Program to act on 6G roadmap

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The aim is to put North America in the lead for 6G and beyond. Other regions have their own 6G projects.

The Alliance for Telecommunications Industry Solutions (ATIS) set up the Next G Alliance last October and it has about 50 ICT, cable and telecom network operator members.

Down to business

It has now announced a technical work programme, working groups and leaders for the National 6G Roadmap, Green G, Technology and Spectrum working groups.

More working groups will be launched in the next few weeks, with the National 6G Roadmap Working Group acting as the coordination point across them all and chaired by Amitava Ghosh, Fellow and Head of Radio Interface Group at Nokia – a well-known North American company and founding member of the Alliance.

“The primary goal of the National 6G Roadmap Working Group is to drive communications technology innovation through developing and maintaining a North American 6G vision, lifecycle roadmap and timeframe,” Ghosh noted.

Regional rivals

Japan is also determined to lead the 6G charge, although it is working with some US companies.

European efforts were pioneered by the University of Oulu in Finland which is now involved in the European Commission’s Hexa-X project, part of the European Union Horizon R&D effort designed to keep Europe at the head of the pack.

The Hexa-X project is led by Nokia.

US efforts

The National 6G Roadmap is intended to establish the North American vision for 6G and beyond, taking an holistic view of the 6G marketplace and broader environment.

In particular, the work is geared toward the eventual commercialisation of 6G, and so will address the lifecycle from research, to standardisation, development, manufacturing and market readiness.

It will have an inherent focus on “the sustainability and societal drivers that will shape future wireless technologies”. This is known by everybody else as finding uses for technology developments driven by technology-based industries.

The Vice Chairs are Lead Solution Architect at AT&T, Marc Grant, and Senior Director of Research and Innovation for 6G Projects at InterDigital, Doug Castor.
Working Groups are set up for the following areas but some are yet to appoint leaders.

Technology – defining the technologies needed to fulfil the vision set out in the National 6G Roadmap, led by Technology in Wireless Research & Development at Qualcomm Eddy (Hwan-Joon) Kwon. 
Applications – identifying the leading vertical applications that will leverage network infrastructure in the Next G environment.  
Spectrum – exploring new paradigms for spectrum access, management and sharing. This work will also look at opportunities to harmonise global spectrum, the coexistence of technologies and greater spectrum efficiency. It is led by Andrew Thiessen, Head of 5G/xG Engagement at MITRE.   
Societal/economic drivers – identifying and characterising social and economic drivers that are central to the 6G vision and how they will drive change and progress and impact the 6G marketplace globally.

Note that ATIS is accredited by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) and is the North American Organizational Partner for the 3rd Generation Partnership Project (3GPP). It is also a founding Partner of the oneM2M global initiative, a member of the International Telecommunication Union (ITU), as well as a member of the Inter-American Telecommunication Commission (CITEL).