6G: the Wireless Communications Network for Collaborative and AI Applications

The MIT Technology Review examines the details in Ready for 6G? How AI Will Shape the Network of the Future.

With 5G networks rolling out around the world, engineers are turning their attention to the next incarnation

Mobile-phone technology has changed the way humans understand and interact with the world and with each other. It’s hard to think of a technology that has more strongly shaped 21st-century living.

The latest technology — the fifth generation of mobile standards, or 5G — is currently being deployed in select locations around the world. And that raises an obvious question. What factors will drive the development of the sixth generation of mobile technology? How will 6G differ from 5G, and what kinds of interactions and activity will it allow that won’t be possible with 5G?

Today, we get an answer of sorts, thanks to the work of Razvan-Andrei Stoica and Giuseppe Abreu at Jacobs University Bremen in Germany. These guys have mapped out the limitations of 5G and the factors they think will drive the development of 6G. Their conclusion is that artificial intelligence will be the main driver of mobile technology and that 6G will be the enabling force behind an entirely new generation of applications for machine intelligence.

Continue reading HERE.

The full paper by Razvan-Andrei Stoica and Giuseppe Thadeu Freitas de Abreu is HERE

Rural communities with enough populations density to meet the telecom ROI hurdles will be the tail end installs, with a ten-year rollout. Many urbanites will get 6G before rural communities have access to 5G. Rural communities may have satellite broadband access by 2021, with access to all the AI they could ever imagine, before 5G arrives. Why worry about 6G?

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Democrat Dings FCC Broadband Reports

— FCC Commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel took aim at two new broadband reports issued by the agency Wednesday, one measuring deployment in Indian Country and the other focused on veterans’ access to high-speed internet. Both reports, she said, came more than a month after their deadline under the RAY BAUM’S Act.

— The tribal broadband report finds that residents of tribal lands have lower rates of both fixed and mobile broadband connectivity than their non-tribal counterparts. But Rosenworcel points out the report relies on data the Government Accountability Office previously concluded leads to overstating service on tribal lands. “This is unacceptable,” Rosenworcel said. “The FCC needs to do better.” According to the report, the FCC intends to launch a proceeding to help close the broadband gap on tribal lands.

Source: POLITICO Morning Tech

City Leaders in Bozeman, Montana, Declare Broadband Essential Infrastructure

In mid-April, city leaders in Bozeman, Montana, passed Resolution No. 5031 to officially declare broadband essential infrastructure for the city. The declaration comports with the city’s long-term goal to bring high-quality connectivity throughout the community.

All the details at Community Networks

Bangor, Maine, passed a similar resolution last summer. As communities make such formal declarations, they show their commitments to improving local economies and encouraging their constituents to consider connectivity an integral part of daily life.

Brookings Institute Metro Policy Paper, Signs of Digital Distress, in less than two decades broadband access has become one of the foundations of the American economy, joining water, sewer, power and energy as essential infrastructure.

It is encouraging that more city leaders are coming to recognize how vital broadband is to daily life and economic commerce. Let us hope your city leaders get the message “real soon now.”

Satellite-Based Cloud Computing Competition

Russ Steele

I just returned from a trip to the Seattle area where cloud computing slipped into the conversation with Amazon announcing the formation of a low latency satellite internet network to provide services, including cloud computing. This new development could bring fast cloud computing services to billions of new customers.

What is cloud computing you ask? Generally, cloud computing services are categorized into three types:
1) Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS): This service provides the infrastructure like Servers, Operating Systems, Virtual Machines, Networks, and Storage on rent basis. Recognized providers include Microsoft Azure and Amazon Web Service

2) Platform as a Service (PaaS): This service is used in developing, testing and maintaining of software. PaaS is same as IaaS but also provides additional tools like database management systems and business intelligence services. Primary provider are Microsoft/RedHat, IBM, and Oracle

3) Software as a Service (SaaS): This service makes the users connect to the applications through the Internet on a subscription basis. Examples are Google Applications, Salesforce, and Microsoft.

Amazon AWS, Microsoft, and Google are all using their infrastructure to provide more cloud-based business services, but now Amazon has changed the game by joining the LEO satellite broadband internet providers. By using a space-based network, AWS is building out service infrastructure to provide cloud connectivity to global customers, faster than surface based competitors, especially over long distances.

The question is can Google and Microsoft stay in the game with Amazon satellite broadband delivered cloud computing services across the globe.

Google Filed patent US 20170005179, on September 30, 2014, for a constellation of 1000 satellites to cover 75% if the earth. However, Project Loon, a series of balloons to provide WiFi services for broad swathes of the unserved area around the equator seem to take priority. With billions in the bank, Google could act on its patented network to become a space-based cloud service company.

What about Microsoft? How do they compete in the cloud computing service business when they are confined to earth-based fiber networks? Satellites networks with laser interconnections are much faster than fiber networks. For example, studies have shown fiber latency between San Francisco and London is about 146 ms, whereas the SpaceX satellite link is about 50% faster at 73 ms, with twelve satellite hops.

Microsoft’s Azure cloud is a rapidly growing business segment. Fiscal third-quarter sales in the company’s Azure cloud computing segment rose 73% year-over-year according to 3rd Quarter Report.

“Leading organizations of every size in every industry trust the Microsoft cloud. We are accelerating our innovation across the cloud and edge so our customers can build the digital capability increasingly required to compete and grow,” Microsoft Chief Executive Satya Nadella said in the earnings release.

If I were a Microsoft advisor, I would recommend Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella investigate becoming a partner with SpaceX or one of the other LEO constellations that has an inter-satellite communications architecture to provide a suite of fast cloud computing service applications.  The game is changing and the winner yet to be determined.

SpaceX’s Starlink Constellation Construction Begins.

2,200 Satellites Will go up Over the Next 5 years

Elon Musk has made a lot of crazy promises and proposals over the years, which inevitably leads people to pester him about deadlines. Whether it’s reusable rockets, affordable electric cars, missions to Mars, intercontinental flights, or anything having to do with his many other ventures, the question inevitably is “when can we expect it?”

That question has certainly come up in relation to his promise to launch a constellation of broadband satellites that would help provide high-speed internet access to the entire world. In response, Musk recently announced that SpaceX will launch the first batch of Starlink satellites in May 2019, and will continue with launches for the next five years.

This represents a major milestone for the company, which has effectively moved from the development phase of this project to production. Another was reached back in February of 2018 when the company launched two Starlink demonstration satellites. Nevertheless, there are still a lot of details about this constellation that are still unclear.

Continue reading HERE.

May is only weeks away, but we do not know when in May the launches are scheduled.  There are no missions listed in the SpaceX launch manifest HERE.

It will be interesting to track the first Starlinks as they whizz about the planet. Stay Tuned.

 

Broadband Caucus Co-Chair To Push For Better Mapping

— Wittman (R-Va.), a new chair of the House Rural Broadband Caucus, is set to speak this morning at rural broadband trade group NTCA’s legislative and policy conference about the need to have better maps of broadband availability and stronger coordination among key agencies like the FCC and Commerce and Agriculture departments, according to an aide. He will also advocate for future-proofing telecom networks, with an eye toward building out more fiber (which can handle large volumes of data, including to push traffic to and from wireless cell sites) and simplifying the federal permitting process, the aide added.

Source: POLITICO Morning Tech

It looks to me we are going to talk about the mapping problem into oblivion. Everyone agrees it is a big problem, with no workable solutions. It is impossible to solve the lack of broadband by throwing money at it if you cannot find where to through the cash. The users without broadband know where the problem is, why does the government have such a difficult time finding a solution? Crowd Source the solution. Send everyone who reports ten addresses without broadband a $10.00 gift card. Each user requests broadband from one or more providers and sends the reply denying availability along with the address lists to the FCC to collect the gift card. Yes, there will be fraud attempts, and they should be prosecuted to the maximum as a deterrent. Do you have a better solution?

A Cyber Economy: The Transactional Value of the Internet in Rural America

The above title is from an iGR White Paper on internet transaction and spending, including the spending by rural internet users. The details are in the study HERE and the Foundation for Rural Service infographic which provides an excellent summary if you are in a hurry.

From the website with links to the white paper and infographic.

This report examines the nature and quantifiable value of online transactions, and draws comparisons between online usage habits among urban and rural consumers. The report was produced by iGR, a market strategy consultancy focused on the wireless and mobile communications industry, and commissioned by the Foundation for Rural Service (FRS).

Major findings include:

  • Internet usage among urban and rural consumers is largely similar.

  • Rural consumers are responsible for approximately 15% of all consumer, internet-driven transactions annually, which equates to more than 10.8 billion online transactions altogether.

  • Internet-driven transactions make up nearly 50% of U.S. gross domestic product (GDP) or $9.6 trillion annually. These transactions are estimated to grow to more than 65% by 2022, to $14 trillion per year.

  • The estimated value of rural online transactions is nearly $1.4 trillion—or 7% of GDP.

This is an impressive study with some interesting numbers, but it only looks at the transaction made by those with a broadband connection, what about the potential of the 14 million rural citizens that do not have any broadband connection?

I predict these 14 million unserved are future users of satellite broadband.