NICT Beyond 5G R&D Promotion Unit


NICT's Beyond 5G Vision

Transcending Space and Time

Transcending Space and Time photo

Creative and Active Lifestyles


Father and daughter

My youngest daughter is very lively and I can’t take my eyes off her even at the park. While watching my daughter, I call up my floating information terminal to have a meeting with my colleagues at work. It is a little cold outside. “Daddy, look! Hmm... POFF!” A pebble crashed into a pile of sand. I notice my wife’s camera drone near my daughter. My wife can’t stop watching her daughter either. She is supposed to be on a business trip until today, but it looks like she is connecting to the smart drone system to check things out. She never trusts me!

First son

The teacher’s lesson through the glass monitor is fun. Next month, they will perform a dance at the theater that was completed on the Moon. I am at home on earth now. The AI alerts me to take a break, and I stop dancing, and check the 3D feedback images while changing the viewpoint. The dancing of my friends is superimposed on the images of myself. “Hmmm, looks like I’m a talented dancer.”

Second son

My brother seems to have started a dance lesson upstairs because the thudding noise is loud. It’s my brother’s turn to cook today, but I decided to take over. It’s fun to be able to create new dishes by using the Skill Learning Assist (apparently the teacher is an old lady in the neighborhood...) . Come to think of it, I am going to Grandpa’s house tomorrow. I’d like to make something for him and bring it. What’s his favorite?”

Grandfather and father

My father is a charismatic local hairdresser. These days, he opens his stores only when his customers ask him to. Today he celebrated his 77th birthday (called “Kiju” in Japanese). It was exciting just like a talent show, with regular customers and old staff coming to celebrate. His hobbies are cycling and fishing, so he is suntanned. “Stay well, Dad.”

With family

After finishing the board game, the children began to breathe like they were sleeping. My wife also started to doze off, rocking her body back and forth like rowing a boat. My second son made inarizushi (sushi wrapped in fried tofu); I wonder how he knew what my father’s favorite food is. Watching someone’s sleeping face makes me feel sleepy too. I switch to automatic navigation mode and stretch out. The gliding skycar’s interior is really quiet. I look up at the Moon from the windshield. “Hey, Bro! Where is the theater where my child will dance?”

Dive to the point


In the stratosphere warehouse that orbits around 20 km above the ground. I (an autonomous AI system) put the requested cargo in my backpack and dive to the ground. The moment I step out, I always get nervous, but when I do, I am filled with a sense of freedom. After leaving the warehouse, the sky gradually changes from dark blue to pale blue, and as I pass through the white clouds at high speed, the image of a city with countless rivers branching and flowing emerges from the haze. As I look closely, I can see the rivers branching into smaller irrigation channels equipped with smaller sluices and hydroelectric generators. The sluices and generators are networked, and the amount of water flowing through the town is managed smartly. Black rain clouds can be seen behind the mountains. A wide-area sensor network is monitoring and forecasting rainfall and river water levels and computing an appropriate drainage program from the town.

As I approach the mountainous area where I am going to be, I notice work drones shining in the vast red pine forest. Multiple robots are cooperating with each other in thinning, collecting, and transporting the trees, to maintain and manage the forest to maximize the flood control effect. Even so, in parts the mountain has collapsed, and the spreading red pine forest is streaked with many lines of reddish-brown soil. I can see the broken steel bridge that the drones are repairing. No matter how smart we become, we will probably never be able to eliminate the damage caused by natural disasters.

Finally, I arrive at my destination, the community center. I dive into a receiving pod about 5 meters in diameter near the public hall. A surprisingly quiet landing, thanks to the technology that collects heat and sound from the impact and stores it efficiently in the battery. After a few minutes of safety checks, the staff take out relief supplies from my backpack. I heard a cheer in the distance.

Made of heat-resistant ceramic equipped with an inertial sensor and space-time synchronization unit, I finish one task and am collected in a maintenance box for the next dive. “Hi, Mr. Staff, when the bridge is fixed, please wash and pour in some fragrant oil. Next, I want to do a rocket entry into the atmosphere.”

Dive to the point photoPCDive to the point photoSPResilient village forest (Satoyama)

What Is in the Sky?


I make a cup of coffee and sit down at my desk at home. The chirping of sparrows and the cold air are refreshing. Facing the widescreen, I quietly read over and modify the assignment report I completed last night. There is no physical keyboard. I tap a keyboard hologram, and with motion capture, the input is sent to the edge cloud. The only noise is the sound of my grandfather tuning up a bicycle. He is 77 years old and still going strong. It’s about time for me to start teaching at a university abroad. I submit a report and switch my mind from student to lecturer. I reach for my headset while eating inarizushi (sushi wrapped in fried tofu) made by my cousin. I realize now that this is why he asked me the day before yesterday about his grandfather’s favorite food. I casually look at my palm and long, slender fingers. I must have taken after my father.

I get on my bike, which is now tuned up, and call out to my granddaughter upstairs. “Hey, I’m going out for a while!” There is no reply. She must be in a lecture. Sorry about that! I am driving at full speed on a big highway. The hood of my brand-new purple hoodie flutters. The wind is pleasant. There is no car on the road. Lightweight delivery drones fly over low-rise areas, personal cars fly over mid-rise areas, and large transport planes fly over high-rise areas. In addition, there are also large warehouses in the stratosphere, from which packages can be delivered directly to remote locations. A large transportation skycar casts a shadow on my path. I pedal harder, trying not to let it pull away from me. When I notice the rain cloud radar alert and try to return home, a ray of light flicks across the sky toward the mountain where a large landslide has occurred.

What Is in the Sky? photoPCWhat Is in the Sky? photoSPVertical-passenger flow, logistics, and experiential consumption