Nokia has announced the opening of a 6G Lab at its global research and development (R&D) centre in Bengaluru, India. The first-of-its-kind project aims to accelerate the development of fundamental technologies and innovative use cases underpinned by 6G technology that will address the future needs of both industry and society. The lab was inaugurated virtually by Ashwini Vaishnaw, Union Minister of Communications, Electronics and Information Technology and Railways.
Nokia’s 6G lab supports the government’s ‘Bharat 6G Vision,’ introduced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, that envisions a key global role for India in the standardisation, development, and implementation of 6G technology. The lab will function as a platform for collaboration for industry stakeholders and facilitate the testing of innovative solutions while establishing their potential for commercialisation.
The lab includes a setup to research network-as-a-sensor technology that enables the network to sense objects, people and movement without the need for on-board sensors. In the 6G era, network-as-a-sensor has been identified as a key enabling technology that supports the vision of bringing the digital and physical worlds together. Sensing will be fully integrated into the wireless network and operate simultaneously with communication services. This has the potential to enable people to see around corners, gather information about their surroundings and even interact with objects at a distance. The lab will also provide an experimental platform for researching algorithms, privacy, and sustainable system design.
This work aims to form a common view and direction for 6G, including 6G Hexa-X and Hexa-X-II, the first and second phase of the European 6G flagship. Nokia is also a founding member of the Next G Alliance which is helping to drive the 6G ecosystem in North America and coordinating the German Lighthouse project 6G ANNA.
Commenting on the occasion, Ashwini Vaishnaw, Union Minister of Communications, Electronics and Information Technology and Railways, said, “The inauguration of the Nokia 6G research lab in Bengaluru today is another step towards PM Narendra Modi’s vision of making India an innovation hub. Interesting use cases coming out of this lab will be related to transportation safety, health care and education which will be another big contribution in the entire Digital India suite.”
Meanwhile, Nishant Batra, chief strategy and technology officer, Nokia said, “Nokia is honoured to contribute towards the realisation of the Indian government’s ‘Bharat 6G vision’. We look forward to collaborating with key stakeholders to help India become a major player in 6G technology development and adoption; and take its place in the global arena as a leading developer and supplier of advanced telecom technologies and solutions.”
Nokia’s experts at its Bengaluru centre will support India’s ambition to make notable contributions towards global 6G technology standards. Further, it is in the process of building research collaborations with premier research institutes in India like the Indian Institute of Science (IISc) and the Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs) to further scale up the 6G research initiative in India.