Qualcomm-Samsung axis brings 5G to the masses as Huawei struggles

Huawei’s Kirin 990 will probably be the FIRST integrated 5G chipset to hit the market

Huawei’s Kirin 990 will probably be the FIRST integrated 5G chipset to hit the market

At the ongoing IFA 2019, Qualcomm announced that it will bring 5G connectivity to chipsets for mid-range and budget smartphones. CES in January could house some more announcements, but it seems like the next Mobile World Congress in February is where we'll see many mainstream 5G devices announced. However, earlier this year, Qualcomm announced that it would be integrating a 5G modem directly into its next flagship 8-series processor, which is due to be released in 2020.

Initially, Qualcomm expected it could take until the middle of next year for phones using its upcoming 5G 7-series chipset to land, but that schedule has moved up.

The chipset will also support Qualcomm AI Engine and Snapdragon Elite Gaming to further improve the performance of the smartphones.

Until now, Qualcomm typically supplied 5G chips from its most expensive line, Snapdragon 8, which on Friday was showcased with a more powerful X55 5G modem delivering speeds of up to 7 gigabits per second. The devices using these platforms will support the entire range of 5G features including mmWave and sub-6 GHz spectrum, TDD and FDD modes, 5G multi-SIM, Dynamic Spectrum Sharing, and Standalone (SA) and non-standalone (NSA) network architectures.

During his IFA keynote, Qualcomm President Cristiano Amon said the year 2019 is a significant moment because it will fuel a new era of innovation and significant growth for the wireless industry beyond traditional applications.

As previously announced, Qualcomm has planned for 5G functionality to be built into more integrated chipsets without the need of a separate built-in 5G modem. The Snapdragon X55 5GModem-RF System is being shipped now to phone manufacturers and will be found in smartphones, 5G PCs, tablets, mobile hotspots, automotive and other commercial products starting late in 2019. During The launch, Huawei claimed the 990 is the most powerful 5G SoC in the world. If 5G flourishes more and more, then around 2 billion smartphone users will get access to 5G. Samsung's Galaxy S10 5G smartphone sells for $1,300. The component is being billed as a comprehensive modem to antenna 5G solution.

Speaking of the aforementioned "system-level" approach to 5G, the company is now symbolically unifying their differentiated modem, RF transceiver and RF Front-end solutions under a single name: Snapdragon 5G Modem-RF systems. That means that phones using its chip will work on any carrier's 5G networks, especially in the United States.

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