The June Review

June has now departed us, and as we romp onwards into the business end of the year let’s take a moment to reflect on some of the key (and note quite so key) news from the past month.

No sooner had the initial rollout of the 5G network begun, the power shuffle amongst the providers began. Perhaps making hay whilst Huawei still nestle in the shadow cast by the spying row, Nokia claim to have overtaken Huawei in terms of its 5G equipment orders. Initial figures suggest that the Finnish firm have taken on 42 commercial contracts, versus the 40 taken on by their Chinese competitor. Perhaps not the massive gulf that would have been expected, but the gulf between the firms seems set to grow considerably by the time Q2 results have been announced.

As we have discussed many times, the tech race in the mobile world is fast and frenzied. However, Samsung seem to be considerably more future focused than most. Lagging behind somewhat in the world of 5G, they have begun to focus their research on the next generation network, 6G. Looking at this logically, this would also demand research into handsets far advanced to those currently available, as very little demands the frightening speed that 6G is already promising. At 1Tbps it is a significant advance from 5G which already boasts an impressive 10Gbps. We are sure many other firms will also have teams researching the next generation already, however none have been so vocal at this incredibly early stage.

Across the pond in America, AT&T have struck an unlikely partnership with Uber with the expressed intent of developing flying taxis powered by 5G in a bid to tackle congestion issues. UberAir, so named, is set for commercial launch in 2023 with passenger flights due to be tested as early as next year. Whilst on the face of it this appears to be a long sought-after concept oft presented in films and television shows alike, considering the negative press and events surrounding the testing of driverless vehicles, this is certain to be a difficult area for development. Uber believes that its air taxis will cut journeys that would normally have taken an hour through traffic down to just 10 minutes via a series of rooftop landing pads. The ambition of this novel innovation notwithstanding, without more convincing it is likely that we will have a new fondness of sitting in traffic safely on terra firma.

The Internet of Things, or IoT, continues to become an ever more interesting area to read about. SK Telecom has announced a collaboration with Korea Hydro & Nuclear Power to harness 5G in the development of smart energy plants. SK Telecom seem to be pioneers in this field, having also announced a partnerships to develop smarter military training using VR, smart offices, and also autonomous vehicles to be run on 5G. Without a doubt the Korean firm is miles ahead of the pack in terms of the applications for 5G and with some of their products already market ready, the versatile range of applications that will be available once the market is completely 5G capable is already highly impressive. Not familiar with the Internet of Things? We wrote an article which will explain what it is and where it is. You can read it here.

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