Qualcomm hopeful of early 2019 5G devices after launching new modules

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Qualcomm has launched 5G New Radio and sub-6GHz RF modules for smart devices, which it said paves the way for the first commercial handsets and tablets early next year.

Both modules are currently sampling and can be paired with Qualcomm's X50 5G modem, which it launched in 2017.

The QTM052 mmWave module can overcome the challenges associated with the frequency, Qualcomm said, by using advanced beam forming and beam tracking to improve the range and quality of radio signals.

The module can support a bandwidth of up to 800MHz in the 26.5-29.5GHz band, as well as the entirety of the 27.5-28.35GHz and 37-40GHz bands.

Qualcomm said the size of the modules allows smart device manufacturers to fit four of them into a smartphone.

The QTM052 will focus on connectivity in densely populated areas and crowded indoor locations, whereas the QPM56xx range of 5G NR modules will support broad coverage. Each of these modules offer Massive MIMO compatibility and support for the 3.3-4.2GHz, 3.3-3.8GHz and 4.4-5.0GHz bands.

Cristiano Amon, President, Qualcomm Incorporated, said: "Now, these type of modem-to-antenna solutions, spanning both mmWave and sub-6 spectrum bands, make mobile 5G networks and devices, especially smartphones, ready for large scale commercialisation.

“With 5G, consumers can expect gigabit-class Internet speeds with unprecedented responsiveness in the palm of their hands, which stand to revolutionise the mobile experience.”

Both MTS and TIM are among the operators that have partnered with Qualcomm for their own 5G demonstrations and research projects.