On October 16, 2021, NIST and international researchers propose a “cognitive” 6G network – vastly improving the 5G network that encodes and transmits data with its meaning or semantics.
With the rapid rollout of commercial 5G, researchers have started looking into 6G. Its key technologies for mobile communication networks are expected to be available as early as 2023, with 6G networks emerging in 2030, according to Saad et al. Compared to 5G, the 6G network will increase data rates by more than 100 times, to a terabyte per second or more, enabling the inclusion of smart devices and edge computing. To move large amounts of data to where and when it is needed, 6G networks will need to customize services to respond to requests, transmit valuable data and interact with users.
To meet these requirements, the paper proposes a “letterbox theory” that envisions a 6G network characterized as:
- Distributed Intelligent Network: This would have intelligent applications integrated throughout the network and would be intelligent, managed and controlled. The network would be able to transmit, store, analyze large-scale data and provide personalized access anytime, anywhere.
- Proactive Interactive Network: This would be a personalized, demand-driven network. Users would define network functions for on-demand resource scheduling. In addition, the network would adjust in real time according to the evolution of user demand. Such a design requires artificial intelligence to adjust the network as well as the protection of personal data.
- Transmission of cognitive information: compared to traditional communications, 6G network would greatly reduce redundant transmissions and better ensure that semantic meanings are extracted, extracted and sent.