KW 15: Germany to fund expansion of 6G, US bans further Chinese IoT manufacturers, Microsoft acquires voice software specialist Nuance


Germany to fund expansion of 6G: The German government plans to provide up to 700 million euros in financing for research into 6G technologies by 2025, Research Minister Anja Karliczek told the „Handelsblatt“ newspaper in an interview. The 6G network is expected to replace 5G from 2030 and enable data transmission at a much higher rate. This is positive not only for private users of mobile communication services, but also for industry and the agriculture sector, the minister added.

Vodafone activates 5G antennas: The widely advertised 5G mobile communications standard is currently barely in use in Germany. The three big 5G providers Vodafone, Telekom and Telefónica are still using the infrastructure of the LTE predecessor network. Many customers hardly notice any difference in the transmission speed. Now, the British telecommunications provider Vodafone is finally changing that. The company has announced that it will activate 1,000 cellular antennas with the new 5G standalone network. According to Vodafone’s chief technology officer, Gerhard Mack, response times “as fast as the human nervous system” can now be achieved in the network.

US bans further Chinese IoT manufacturers: Surveillance giants Hikvision and Dahua along with three other Chinese telecom equipment manufacturers – Huawei, ZTE Corp. and Hytera Communications Corp. – were placed on a list of companies deemed threats to national security by the United States‘ Federal Communication Commission’s Public Safety and Homeland Security Bureau. In a statement, the FCC said the companies produce telecommunications equipment and services that have been found to pose an unacceptable risk to US national security or the security and safety of US persons. The Secure Networks Act requires the FCC to publish and maintain a list of communications equipment and services that pose such risks.

Microsoft acquires voice software specialist Nuance: Microsoft announced Monday that it will buy speech recognition company Nuance Communications for $56 per share. The Nuance acquisition represents Microsoft’s largest acquisition since it bought LinkedIn for more than $26 billion in 2016. Nuance would be aligned with the part of Microsoft’s business that serves businesses and governments. Nuance derives revenue by selling tools for recognizing and transcribing speech in doctor office visits, customer-service calls and voicemails. In its announcement, Microsoft said Nuance’s technology will be used to augment Microsoft’s cloud products for health care, which were launched last year.

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With 130 million tons of carbon dioxide emissions from its own Bitcoin market alone, the Chinese cryptocurrency industry will already exceed the climate-damaging emissions of countries such as Spain or the Czech Republic by 2024, according to a study by Beijing researchers.


Hanover Fair is digital for the first time ever: The Hannover Messe, the world’s leading industrial fair taking place in Hannover, Germany, from April 12 to 16, will be fully digital for the first time. Companies from all sectors of business will participate in Hannover Messe 2021 to look for business partners, export markets, new technologies and opportunities to grow. They will also look to be in a stronger position in the post-pandemic world and benefit from the tectonic shifts taking place in global trade.

Chinese technology metropolis Shenzhen with more 5G stations than the whole of Europe: The municipal government of China’s Shenzhen announced that the city’s 5G deployment is fully completed. This makes it the first city in China to achieve full-scale 5G deployment. The city had deployed 46,480 5G base stations, Mayor Chen Rugui said during a recent industry event. That’s the largest 5G network in the world. For comparison: In Germany, there are only a few hundred stations that rely on full-fledged 5G standalone mobile communications. Global players such as Huawei and Tencent, which have their headquarters very close to Shenzhen, benefit enormously from speeds that are up to 100 times faster than the previous 4G generation.,

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Improving production processes via employee smartwatch: Optimizing production processes is one of the driving forces behind the Internet of Things (IoT). Munich start-up Workerbase promises an innovative solution. According to the founders, the IoT is far too often about machines, communication and the evaluation of data while the employees are neglected. In order to involve the workforce more effectively in their own work processes, the Munich-based company has developed a platform that is intended to help control production in real time. The software runs on employee smartwatches and can be used at any time.


„6G will be the mobile data technology of the future and will revolutionize our communication in the next decade.“
German Education Minister Anja Karliczek in an interview with “Handelsblatt” about the new 6G mobile communications standard.


Slower internet after launch of Vodafone 5G Standalone: The new cellular standard 5G promises to significantly accelerate transmission rates on the internet. But customers in Germany have yet to notice an improvement, which is mainly due to the fact that the major providers have so far only used the infrastructure of the LTE predecessor network. On Monday, Vodafone announced the start of the 5g standalone standard in the live network of Vodafone Germany. But according to the group, this will cause an initial decline in the data transmission rate. For voice telephony, customers would still have to leave the 5G network and use 4G.

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