5G networks are not widely available yet, but China has already started developing 6G.

Lena Li, a Chinese student, raised high hopes when she landed in Australia to study telecommunications engineering.

In its shadow, Australia, as the country where wi-fi was first discovered, is a country that is advanced in terms of technology.

But the truth is not as beautiful as he imagined.

"When I video call with my parents on WeChat, it often appears on the screen the message that the internet connection is not good, on my mother's screen, it says my internet is bad," Lena, 25, said.

While Australia is still developing 5G mobile networks, China has announced that its 6G mobile network will be available in the commercial market in nine years, according to a statement released earlier this month.

Lena wants to work for Australian telecommunications giant Huawei, but the company is banned from selling 5G goods in Australia due to national security concerns.

Huawei will reportedly send two satellites next month to test the 6G technology to be launched.

Meanwhile, the United States, known for its technological advances, is trying to reclaim the title by creating new regulations and mobilizing their money for research purposes to compete with Chinese technology.

Although 6G at this point is still very theoretical, because it is likely to appear in 10 years, the struggle for dominance of the wireless technology throne is heating up. What is 6G? What's different about 5G?

6G means the sixth generation of wireless cellular connectivity.

Mobile network standards are updated every ten years, ranging from 1G in 1980 to 5G in 2020.

So, 6G is expected to start circulating in 2030 and promises a faster internet network than previous networks.

Communications expert Professor Branka Vucetic, director of the Centre for IoT (Internet of Things) and Telecommunications at the University of Sydney, is at the forefront of the development and research of 5G and 6G networks in Australia.

He said 6G networks would deliver on promises that 5G networks don't meet, with more reliable capabilities and low prices.

Professor Branka Vucetic and his team worked on 6G network projects, algorithms, and network protocols. (ABC News: Samuel Yang)

"6G networks will be a major conduit for some new features, for example, the integration of the human brain with computers. Robots that help with human activities at home, and care for the sick or elderly," he said.

"Self-driving cars will be well known in the 2030s and will be connected to 6G networks." How far is the development of 6G technology in China today?

China began research into 6G networks in 2018, at the same time as the United States.

China has set the development of 6G networks as a priority in its five-year plan.

Professor Greg said there was a lot of interest in 6G in the Chinese media. (Supplied: Greg Austin)

The Chinese government says 6G technology will be used for smart city development, natural disaster prevention and environmental protection.

Professor Greg Austin, an expert at the University of New South Wales' Institute of Cybersecurity, said although there was little information at what stage china's 6G development would be, it was possible the network would also be used in military and intelligence.

"China's public discussion of 6G has always been around how society will benefit to human progress in general," he said.

"It's too early to identify 6G applications against specific military or intelligence needs." Will China win the 6G game?

The race over who dominates 6G technology is still taking place between China and the United States. (ABC News: Jarrod Fankhauser)

According to the National Intellectual Property Administration, China holds 35 percent of patent applications related to 6G, followed by the United States with 18 percent.

Earlier this month, the U.S. Senate passed a new bill for research and innovation for $250 billion.

Last April, the U.S. and Japan announced a $4.5 billion cooperation plan for research, development and 6G trials.

"The Chinese government is locked in a war of technological progress with the United States in every way smelling of strategic politics and military necessity," Professor Greg said.

"So we can't separate China's interest in 6G from its interest in artificial intelligence or space exploration, or even the ocean."

Professor Branka said China is currently the most superior in 5G technology and managed to get a large investment from smartphone production companies, telcos, and the Chinese Government in the development of 6G. "The strategic importance of 5G is often missed by Western countries," he said.

Next G Alliance, a coalition led by the United States such as Apple, Google, At&T, was established in October last year to "advance the leadership of the United States in the Field of 6G".

Wireless networking companies and smartphone factories in South Korea and Europe have also joined the 6G game by setting up large numbers of development and research projects.

"If China is prepared to invest at a level where America and other countries are not investing, maybe China will lead 6G technology in 2025 or 2030," Professor Greg said.

"But more importantly, humanity will defeat 6G technology. There will be a new breakthrough."

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