Nigerians React as China Launches 6G Test Satellite into Orbit


China has taken a major step in achieving the next-generation mobile access technology with the successful launch of the world’s first 6G satellite into space. 

The experimental satellite containing advanced telecommunications technology was among the 13 satellite aboard the Long March-6 rocket launched into low Earth orbit on November 6 from the Taiyuan Satellite Launch Center in Shanxi Province.

The 70kg 6G test satellite developed jointly by Chengdu Guoxing Aerospace Technology and Beijing MinoSpace Technology will be used in a pilot testing program to trial 6G technology in space.

6G testing – 100 time faster than 5G

According to reports, the satellite will verify the performance of data transmission using terahertz spectrum. It also aims to improve communication technology in space.

Furthermore, it will be used to test a number of smart cities, environmental protection, and disaster prevention applications, such as crop and forest fire monitoring.

6G technology is still at its nascent stages and there won’t be any formal specifications worked out for a number of years. However, the satellite launch show started to gain momentum as major industry players back a launch as early as 2030.

According to speculations, 6G which is expected to be more than 100 times faster than 5G will enable seamless transmission, longer distances, faster speeds, and smaller power output from space to land-based communication devices.

Also, while 5G networks have been designed to provide connectivity in bi-dimensional space, future 6G heterogeneous architectures will provide 3-dimensional coverage by deploying non-terrestrial platforms like drones and satellites.

Nigerians React

The launch of the 6G satellite has spark mixed responses from Nigerians, the most pronounced being funny memes about the conspiracy theory that followed the launch of 5G technology.

Most of the funny memes posted on Twitter surrounded Pastor Chris’ unfounded claim that 5G technology was responsible for the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic.

The tweets show different memes showing Pastor Chris’ confusion after realising 6G is now being tested.

Some Nigerians, however, showed concern over any possible repercussion of the new development. A Twitter user Andy, tweeted “Okay, so 2020 now sends us 6G from China. Should we be on the lookout for 6G chem trails? Beware Death and Destruction may follow. You have been WARNED!”

Others still expressed curiosity and surprise as many are still just getting acquainted with the 5G technology. Saheed a Twitter user was confused as to what 6G really means.

He isn’t alone, another user, Pravin indicated that he isn’t even aware of what the technology 5G is about.

Suggested read: Low Latency, Network Slicing; 6 Benefits of 5G You Probably Didn’t Know of

Nigeria still on 4G

Apart from the memes, some Nigerians compared China’s progress to the current network capability in the country. Azeez, a twitter user lamented that Nigeria is way behind.

According to him, the 4G in the country is still very poor and China is already talking about 6G technology.

NCC recently revealed that it has not concluded plans for the deployment of 5G network as consultation with stakeholders is still ongoing.

In summary

Although China is leading the race to achieve 6G technology, other countries are not far behind. Samsung expects the ITU-R to begin work on 6G in 2021, with the standard to be completed as early as 2028.

Similarly, US Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile US, and US Cellular are set to collaborate to steer the development of 6G.

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