On the Road to 6G: Visions, Requirements, Key Technologies and Testbeds

Cheng-Xiang Wang, Xiaohu You, Xiqi Gao, Xiuming Zhu, Zixin Li, Chuan Zhang, Haiming Wang, Yongming Huang, Yunfei Chen, Harald Haas, John Thompson, Erik Larsson, M. Di Renzo, Wen Tong, Peiying Zhu, Xuemin Shen, Vincent Poor, Lajos Hanzo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

Fifth generation (5G) mobile communication systems have entered the stage of commercial deployment, providing users with new services, improved user experiences as well as a host of novel opportunities to various industries. However, 5G still faces many challenges. To address these challenges, international industrial, academic, and standards organizations have commenced research on sixth generation (6G) wireless communication systems. A series of white papers and survey papers have been published, which aim to define 6G in terms of requirements, application scenarios, key technologies, etc. Although ITU-R has been working on the 6G vision and it is expected to reach a consensus on what 6G will be by mid-2023, the related global discussions are still wide open and the existing literature has identified numerous open issues. This paper first provides a comprehensive portrayal of the 6G vision, technical requirements, and application scenarios, covering the current common understanding of 6G. Then, a critical appraisal of the 6G network architecture and key technologies is presented. Furthermore, existing testbeds and advanced 6G verification platforms are detailed for the first time. In addition, future research directions and open challenges are identified to stimulate the on-going global debate. Finally, lessons learned to date concerning 6G networks are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)905-974
Number of pages71
JournalIEEE Communications Surveys & Tutorials
Issue number2
Early online date27 Feb 2023
Publication statusPublished - 23 May 2023

Keywords / Materials (for Non-textual outputs)

  • 6G application scenarios
  • 6G challenges
  • 6G key performance indicators (KPIs)
  • 6G key technologies
  • 6G network architecture
  • 6G testbeds
  • 6G vision


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