6G Technology: Daily Current Affairs

GS-3: Science and technology, Awareness in the field of IT, space, computers, robotics, nanotechnology, biotechnology and issues relations to intellectual property rights.

Key phrases: TRAI, TDSAT, 5G, 6G, National Digital Communications Policy, 2018.

Why in news:

India is working towards an indigenously developed 6G technology with the aim to launch it either by 2023-end or early 2024.


  • The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) is a regulatory body set up by the Government of India under section 3 of the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India Act, 1997. It is the regulator of the telecommunications sector in India. It consists of a Chairperson and not more than two full-time members and not more than two part-time members. The TRAI Act was amended by an ordinance, effective from 24 January 2000, establishing a Telecom Disputes Settlement and Appellate Tribunal (TDSAT) to take over the adjudicatory and disputes functions from TRAI.
  • The two institutions established under the TRAI Act are to regulate telecommunication services, adjudicate disputes, dispose of appeals and protect the interest of the service providers as well as the consumers. The Act also aims at promoting and ensuring orderly growth of the telecom sector.
  • TRAI's mission is to create and nurture conditions for growth of telecommunications in the country. TRAI regulates telecom services including fixation/revision of tariffs for telecom services which were earlier vested in the Central Government.

TDSAT was set up to adjudicate any dispute between:

  • A licensor and a licensee.
  • Two or more service providers
  • A service provider and a group of consumers
  • It was also established to hear and dispose of appeals against any direction, decision or order of TRAI.

About Mobile Networks:

  • Mobile networks have seen a major transformation since the launch of the first-generation mobile services, which were capable of transmitting only voice calls.
  • The current generation of mobile networks (fourth-generation, or 4G) is adept in handling higher data speeds required for multimedia streaming, besides providing basic network operations like voice calls, messages and web browsing.
  • However, with the changing connectivity needs, rising mobile data traffic and a new category of connected-ecosystem products, there is a need for yet newer generation of mobile network that can provide even higher data speeds at low latency and enhanced throughput to handle more simultaneous connections without causing disruptions.
  • And, this is exactly what 5G telephony is all about.

What is 5G?

  • As the name suggests, 5G is the fifth-generation cellular network technology.
  • It is designed to improve network connections by addressing the legacy issues of speed, latency and utility, which the earlier generations and the current generation of mobile networks could not address. 5G is promised to deliver data speed at a rate 100 times faster than 4G networks.
  • Importantly, it is designed to transmit data almost instantly with a network latency of less than 10ms.
  • It will also have an enhanced throughput to handle more simultaneous connections at a time than current-generation networks.

Features and benefits of the 5G technology:

  • Operates in the millimeter wave spectrum (30-300 GHz) which have the advantage of sending large amounts of data at very high speeds.
  • Operates in 3 bands, namely low, mid and high frequency spectrum.
  • Reduced latency will support new applications that leverage the power of 5G, the Internet of Things (IoT), and artificial intelligence.
  • Increased capacity on 5G networks can minimize the impact of load spikes, like those that take place during sporting events and news events.

Global Progress on 5G:

Global telecom companies have already started building 5G networks and rolling it out to their customers in many countries:

  • 5G has been deployed in 50 cities in the United States.
  • South Korea has rolled out 5G to 85 cities.
  • Japan and China have also started 5G mobile service on a trial basis.

What is 6G?

In telecommunications, 6G is the sixth generation standard currently under development for wireless communications technologies supporting cellular data networks. It is the planned successor to 5G and will likely be significantly faster.

The National Digital Communications Policy, 2018 envisages three Missions

  • Connect India: Creating Robust Digital Communications Infrastructure to promote Broadband for All as a tool for socio-economic development, while ensuring service quality and environmental sustainability.
  • Propel India: Enabling Next Generation Technologies and Services through Investments, Innovation and IPR generation to harness the power of emerging digital technologies, including 5G, AI, IoT, Cloud and Big Data to enable provision of future ready products and services; and to catalyse the fourth industrial revolution (Industry 4.0) by promoting Investments, Innovation and IPR.
  • Secure India: Ensuring Sovereignty, Safety and Security of Digital Communications to secure the interests of citizens and safeguard the digital sovereignty of India with a focus on ensuring individual autonomy and choice, data ownership, privacy and security; while recognizing data as a crucial economic resource.


The policy aims to:

  • Provide universal broadband connectivity at 50 Mbps to every citizen;
  • Provide 1 Gbps connectivity to all Gram Panchayats by 2020 and 10 Gbps by 2022;
  • Ensure connectivity to all uncovered areas;
  • Attract investments of USD 100 billion in the Digital Communications Sector;
  • Train one million manpower for building New Age Skill;
  • Expand IoT ecosystem to 5 billion connected devices;
  • Establish a comprehensive data protection regime for digital communications that safeguards the privacy, autonomy and choice of individuals;
  • Facilitate India's effective participation in the global digital economy;
  • Enforce accountability through appropriate institutional mechanisms to assure citizens of safe and Secure digital communications infrastructure and services.

The policy advocates:

  • Establishment of a National Digital Grid by creating a National Fibre Authority;
  • Establishing Common Service Ducts and utility corridors in all new city and highway road projects;
  • Creating a collaborative institutional mechanism between Centre, States and Local Bodies for Common Rights of Way, standardization of costs and timelines;
  • Removal of barriers to approvals; and
  • Facilitating development of Open Access Next Generation Networks.

Way forward:

  • Research and development by private players to be encouraged.
  • Better technology can have an impact on other issues of life such as education, health etc. especially in this digital era.

Source: Indian Express