The 6G vision is already taking shape, even as the 5G roll outs and promises slowly begin to see the light of day.
Yet the 6G vision, as proposed by Nokia’s Bell Labs, seems familiar and not that different to the worlds that are evolving now. And it is not just Nokia who is making the noise, more and more governments are promising to be at the forefront and ‘leading the way.‘ And according to the Head of GSMA Intelligence, metaverse will be the top, hot topic at the upcoming MWC 2022 event in just five weeks time. Which will further fuel the hype.
As with previous ‘breakthroughs’ and associated hype, the now familiar buzzwords and phrases such as ‘merging the physical and digital worlds’ are doing the rounds.
AI will be a driving force in the 6G vision. Um, it is already evolving to be the engine of pretty much everything we do anyway.
You will be able to collaborate with colleagues on the far side of the world, ‘almost like teleporting yourself there.’ Um, Metaverses are being designed and developed to do just that.
VR will be the immersive technology that we will interact in. Already VR is established and being used by a wide and growing range of people for a growing number of tasks. This writer of code and tech pieces spent hundreds of hours working inside VR (he chose space as his location and was able to create a keyboard from whatever he was watching).
Did the experience change his life, cause a breakthrough moment or make him change the way he viewed the world. Not really.
But it was quite cool.
The 6G vision, at the moment, seems very like ‘more of the same’ with some extra buzzwords thrown in. You have to ask whether blurring the lines of the physical and digital worlds to that extent is healthy for the way we interact with our own world (6G can fix our world, too – apparently).
If the 6G vision is based around some sort of Metaverse existence, where generations of younger people feel more like themselves then it seems as if we are walking into an environment which is fundamentally false. Or perhaps that is the point. Perhaps we are sick to death with the real world and its problems and we need to hide somewhere nice.
Except, as we have reported, virtual worlds are as full of sexual predators, hackers, thieves and other assorted rotten apples as the real ones.
Perhaps the real point of the 6G vision is to create a place where most people will go and live, while the real world burns and the very richest people quietly disappear to their holiday homes on Mars.
Either way, it doesn’t feel like a joyful revolution. More like an excuse to stop people thinking too much.