Ericsson to invest tens of millions into UK 6G research
Telecoms firm Ericsson has unveiled a multi-million-pound investment in UK-based 6G research.
The decade-long investment will focus on research towards 6G and other “breakthrough innovations” according to the Swedish telecoms vendor.
Research areas will include network resilience and hardware security, artificial intelligence, cognitive networks, and energy efficiency.
The programme will involve 20 dedicated researchers, as well as PhD students, academics, communication service providers (CSPs), and industry partners who will all work towards the 6G projects.
Globally, Ericsson has 17 sites across 12 countries, with more than 800 researchers working across four continents.
6G is forecast to become available in the 2030s, advancing on the current mobile connectivity breakthroughs that 5G is enabling.
In the summer, Ericsson, OPPO and Qualcomm Technologies successfully trialled a 5G enterprise network slicing solution on a commercial Android 12 set.
It is expected that 6G will help deliver new use cases such as multi-sensory extended reality, precision healthcare, smart agriculture, cobots, and intelligent autonomous systems.
Michelle Donelan, the secretary of state for the UK government’s Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS), said: “Ericsson’s investment is a huge vote of confidence in the UK’s innovative telecoms sector. The 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: “Our mission is to lead the world in developing next-generation network tech, and we will soon publish a strategy outlining how we harness 6G to deliver more for people and business.”
In July, DCMS announced a collaboration with South Korea in order to accelerate 5G and 6G deployment. The countries planned to invest a joint £3.6m to create R&D for interoperable solutions.
Katherine Ainley, CEO of Ericsson UK and Ireland said: “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.”
In 2021, Ericsson invested over 18% of its annual global turnover in R&D. It has a total of 21 R&D centres across Europe and is engaged in over 100 joint research and knowledge exchange collaborations.
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