Published: Wed, February 14, 2018
Industry | By Johnnie Johnson

Snapdragon X24 blurs the line between 4G LTE and 5G

Snapdragon X24 blurs the line between 4G LTE and 5G

Speaking to Qualcomm, we learned that while the chip is being demonstrated in Barcelona at Mobile World Congress later this month, the X24 won't actually be commercially available until the end of the year - and that's just in standalone configuration.

If you're thinking how the Snapdragon X24 will be of use in emerging markets such as India and China, Qualcomm has provided multi-SIM support with LTE dual-SIM, dual-standby (DSDS)+LAA feature as well as dual-SIM, dual-VoLTE (DSDV) functionality.

As we prep for the arrival of 5G connectivity, Qualcomm has made a special announcement that will be seen as the next plateau of blazing fast LTE speeds. Qualcomm wasn't really offering us many details here, but my takeaway is that it's going to be down to the choices of its carrier and handset partners to decide which chip is the best fit for them.

"The plan for smartphones is that you'll have an SOC with an integrated gigabit LTE modem, and the 5G subsystem which includes the 5G modem will exist alongside it on the board", Hanna said. With this, Qualcomm also revealed a list of 18 OEMs who will be using the x50 modem and 5G technology in their upcoming hardware.

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American chip manufacturer Qualcomm has officially announced the Snapdragon x50 modem based on 5G technology.

This is all, of course, speculation.

This latest addition to Qualcomm's modem stable is being seen as a continuation of the company's drive to take the industry closer to 5G, while also widening the technology gap with its competitors.

The firm says that you'll be able to catch demos of the product if you're at Mobile World Congress, with products from Ericsson, Netgear, and Telstra.

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The fastest available LTE modems, like Qualcomm's Snapdragon X20, are capable of reaching [theoretical] top speeds of 1.2Gbps.

"Qualcomm Technologies is deeply committed to helping our customers deliver next-generation 5G mobile experiences to consumers, which requires enhanced mobile broadband 5G NR connectivity enabled by 5G NR networks, mobile devices and the Snapdragon X50 5G modem". It's a significant improvement over last year's Snapdragon X20, which supported up to 1.2Gbps.

The new modem supports 7x carrier aggregation on its downlink and 4x4 MIMO on up to five aggregated LTE carriers.

The Snapdragon X24 modem supports concurrent multi-constellation multi-frequency global navigation satellite systems (GNSS), which provides highly accurate location positioning required in different applications and services. There is also full-dimension Multi-Input Multi-Output (FD-MIMO) to give way to carriers to start sending their 5G signals. In the uplink, Snapdragon X24 supports Category 20 upload speeds, 3x20 MHz CA and up to 256-QAM.

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