6g uk mobile broadband

The First 6G Mobile Broadband Networks Could Surface in 2028


The Government of South Korea has set somewhat of a marker down for the world this week after announcing that they would aim to bring forward the timetable for launching the first commercial 6G based mobile network, which would see it being introduced from 2028 instead of 2030 (with pre-6G trials staring in 2026).

At present, the 6G standard is still in the early R&D phase, and most people didn’t expect to see the first commercial builds until around 2030. But it is widely expected to be aiming for theoretical peak data rates of up to 1Tbps (Terabits per second) – or 1000Gbps if you prefer – and may be able to harness radio spectrum up to the TeraHertz (THz) bands, while also using AI optimisations, new antenna designs and other changes to improve network efficiency.

However, hitting such speeds in the real-world is a much bigger challenge, due to various reasons, such as the highly variable mobile environment (weather, buildings, trees and device choice all impact signal quality). Not to mention the high cost of needing to deploy an extremely dense and complex network, which is needed to help overcome the huge problems with weak signals and other obstacles (e.g. building lots of new masts tends to upset people).

trains and railways uk

Neos is Preferred Bidder for Network Rail’s Trackside Fibre Cables

Network operator Neos Networks has today been named as the preferred bidder for Network Rail’s Project Reach, which among other things could see them invest in the design and build of a new trackside fibre optic communications network. This could also help to improve UK gigabit broadband and 5G mobile coverage.

Just to recap. We reported last year that both Neos Networks (bidding alongside Cellnex) and Virgin Media (bidding alongside Nokia and Jacobs) had been approved to bid on the £1bn (estimated) auction of 16,000 km (10,000 miles) worth of Network Rail’s trackside cable network.

The privatisation plan, which among other things would see the winning bidder upgrade the trackside infrastructure and build 250 new mobile masts to help tackle 5G “notspots” for commuters, was first revealed by Network Rail in 2021 (here). The sale itself reflects their older trackside cable network, much of which this still runs off legacy copper lines and is in need of an upgrade (this carries all sorts of transport, CCTV, signalling and other data).

Read the full story here.

Trooli engineer near manhole

Talk of a Sale Surrounds UK Full Fibre AltNet Provider Trooli

Trooli engineer near manhole

Kent-based broadband ISP Trooli, which aims to deploy a full fibre (FTTP) network to 1 million UK premises by the end of 2024 (in August they reported 275,000 completed), has attracted fresh rumours of a possible sale after they reportedly appointed a business sale and restructuring specialist, David Duggins, to their Board.

At present the provider is known to be building across a sizeable number of towns and villages in Derbyshire, Kent, East Sussex, Berkshire, Buckinghamshire, Cambridgeshire, Hampshire and Suffolk. As part of this, Trooli were initially aiming to reach 400,000 premises across around 300 towns and villages by Dec 2022, but we’ve so far been unable to confirm how close they got to this.

The project was initially supported by an investment of €30m from the Connecting Europe Broadband Fund (Cube Infrastructure Managers) and £5m from NatWest, which was given a huge boost in 2021 by a new £67.5m debt facility agreement via a consortium of commercial lenders, facilitated by the CEBF (here).

Read the full story here.

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