Ericsson is set to build a new 6G research facility in the United Kingdom with tens of millions in investment over ten years’ time, the company announced on Wednesday.
The initiative aims to create next-generation wireless connectivity infrastructure across the nation. It will also develop Britain’s 6G innovations with network security, artificial intelligence (AI), green efficiency, and neural networks, as well as global technological development.
📣 Ericsson has announced a multi-million-pound investment in #6G research for the UK. Together with academics, innovators and our dedicated research team, we are working to deliver a more connected, safer and sustainable world.
— Ericsson (@ericsson) November 22, 2022
Industry verticals and consumers will benefit from the programme, adding over 20 researchers. It will also back doctoral students working with key affiliates for future 6G research projects.
Research conducted under the initiative will also back the UK Government’s pledge for global standards and hyperconnectivity plans.
According to Ericsson, the industry expects 6G to take off in the 2030s and will create social, industry, and consumer use cases based on advancements from 5G, blending the physical and digital worlds.
New systems such as “multi-sensory extended reality, precision healthcare, smart agriculture, cobots, and intelligent autonomous systems,” the company stated.
Comments on Ericsson 6G Initiative
Several key stakeholders offered their views on the upcoming programme. The UK’s Department for Culture, Media, and Sport Secretary of State, Michelle Donelan, said,
“Ericsson’s investment is a huge vote of confidence in the UK’s innovative telecoms sector. This pioneering research unit will create new jobs, support students and bring together some of our country’s finest minds to shape the future of telecoms infrastructure in the UK and across the globe”
She added Ericsson’s mission was to “lead the world” in next-generation networking technologies and would soon outline its 6G strategy in due course.
Katherine Ainley, Chief Executive of Ericsson UK and Ireland, said that the networking giant had connected the UK for over 120 years. Fresh investments would reaffirm its commitment to “ensure the country remains a global leader in” such technologies.
“Our vision for a more connected, safer and sustainable world is one that is shared by the UK government, and we look forward to working together with network operators, industries and academia to develop international standards that will move us ever closer to achieving seamless global connectivity and truly groundbreaking innovation”
Magnus Frodigh, Vice President and Head of Ericsson Research, explained that establishing the UK-based research programme would allow the country to become “well positioned” to use its knowledge of global networking technologies to create “groundbreaking 6G research” to “shape the future of global standards but also deliver a more connected, efficient and sustainable society.”
Ericsson and the Future of XR
The news comes after the Swedish telecoms giant joined forces with Three Ireland and Glanbia Ireland to develop Ireland’s first-ever 5G campus network. It will trial novel virtual and augmented reality (VR/AR) and operate its Radio Dot System at Glanbia’s Ballyragget, County Kilkenny facility.
Ericsson also rallied the industry to support further development of XR, stating it had “enormous potential” for global industries. Several of its executives stated that networking innovations could tackle challenges to current XR form factors, namely data offloading tools such as edge and cloud computing.