American chipmaker Qualcomm has announced its new 5G solutions, including its latest Snapdragon X65 5G modem that can achieve speeds of up to 10 Gigabits. Apart from the new Snapdragon X65 5G modem, a next-generation RF Front End (RFFE) solution for high-performance 5G smartphones, and a Fixed 5G Wireless Access (FWA) platform Gen 2 have been announced by the American chipmaker. Out of the three, the Snapdragon X65 5G modem comes as the biggest announcement as it will be used in 5G-enabled premium smartphones in 2021. The Snapdragon X65 modem is Qualcomm's fourth generation 5G modem-to-antenna solution and comes as the world's first 10 gigabit 5G modem and the first 3GPP release 16 modem-RF system.
Qualcomm, in its release said that OEMs are currently sampling the Snapdragon X65 modem and is targeted towards a commercial launch in 2021 itself. The company said that the Snapdragon X65 modem is the company's biggest leap in 5G solution since the commercialisation of its first modem-RF systems. Qualcomm said that the new modem is designed to support the fastest 5G speeds that are currently available with fiber-like wireless performance and makes the best use of available spectrum for network flexibility, capacity, and coverage. Cristiano Amon, president and CEO-elect for Qualcomm Incorporated, said, "We are reaching a significant milestone with the Snapdragon X65 5G Modem-RF System, unleashing connectivity up to 10 Gigabits per second (Gbps) and support for the latest 5G specifications that will play a critical role in enabling new 5G use cases not only for redefined premium smartphone experiences, but also opening a new realm of possibilities for 5G expansion across mobile broadband, compute, XR, industrial IoT, 5G private networks, and fixed wireless access."
Qualcomm said that the fourth-generation 5G modem-RF system is designed for 5G smartphones globally and brings major innovations from modem to antenna along with extensive spectrum aggregation capabilities across sub-6GHz and mmWave. This, the company's executive said, will fuel the rapid expansion of 5G while enhancing coverage, power efficiency, and performance for users. The Qualcomm Snapdragon X65 5G modem-RF system comes with features like an upgradable architecture, which allows for enhancements, expandability, and customisations across 5G segments. The upgradable architecture allows for future-proofing of solution based on Snapdragon X65 as it facilitates adoption of new features, extending device lifespan, and helping reduce total cost of ownership as 5G expands into new vertical industries such as compute, industrial IoT, and fixed wireless access.
The Qualcomm 545 mmWave antenna module also pairs with the Snapdragon X65 Modem-RF system to support higher transmit power as compared to the previous generations as well as support for all global mmWave frequencies, including the new n259 (41 GHz) band, while maintaining the same tiny footprint as the previous generation.
The Qualcomm Snapdragon X65 modem will also take advantage of the world's first AI antenna tuning technology, and will have a next-gen power-tracking solution that is smaller, more efficient, and offers higher performance.
Perhaps the most important feature of the Snapdragon X65 modem is its ability to achieve speeds of up to 10Gbps. Qualcomm said that the new modem is poised to support a new generation of premium smartphones and the expansion of 5G in segments such as PCs, mobile hotspots, industrial IoT, fixed wireless access, and private 5G networks. Qualcomm said that its tight modem-RF integration and advanced modem-RF technologies will help OEMs deliver superior data speeds coverage, call quality, and support for all-day battery life in a sleek form factor to customers.
Apart from the Snapdragon X65 modem, the American chipmaker also announced its next generation of Qualcomm RF Front End (RFFE) solutions which are designed to support advanced performance and power-efficiency capabilities in the newly-announced Snapdragon X65 and X62 5G modems. Qualcomm's RF Front End solutions will bring together the modem, RF transceiver, and RF front-end components with AI assistance and mmWave antenna modules to enable smartphone makers to design premium 5G devices.
The products included in Qualcomm's RFFE portfolio are:
1. Seventh-generation Qualcomm® Wideband Envelope Tracker (Qualcomm® QET7100)
2. World’s first multi-mode, multi-output, multi-power amplifier, wideband envelope tracking solution supporting global 5G sub-6 GHz and LTE bands.
3. Qualcomm AI-Enhanced Signal Boost – World’s first 5G adaptive antenna tuning solution enhanced with AI designed to improve context-based antenna performance and help OEMs address the growing number of antennas and frequency ranges required in 5G mobile devices.
4. New integrated 5G/4G Power Amplifier (PA) Modules and Diversity Modules.
Apart from the new 5G modem and other RFFE solutions, Qualcomm also announced a Qualcomm 5G Fixed Wireless Access platform (Gen 2). The new platform, powered by the fourth-generation Qualcomm® Snapdragon™ X65 5G Modem-RF System, will enable new business opportunities for mobile operators by allowing them to offer fixed internet broadband services to homes and businesses using their 5G network infrastructure. The new FWA platform also features the second generation extended-range Qualcomm QTM547 mmWave antenna module, support for extended-range high power 5G sub-6 GHz, the world’s first 5G sub-6 GHz support with eight receive (RX) antennas, and support for Qualcomm® Dynamic Antenna Steering technology.
Introducing our 2nd-gen #5G Fixed Wireless Access Platform, powered by the #Snapdragon X65 Modem-RF System with #mmWave and sub-6 GHz. This innovation will accelerate the rollout of fixed internet for businesses and homes. #WhatsNextIn5G https://t.co/vdiGji3tmt— Qualcomm (@Qualcomm) February 9, 2021
Qualcomm is also announcing the new Snapdragon X12+ LTE Modem for FWA devices that rely solely on 4G networks. The Snapdragon X12+ modem enables device manufacturers and operators the ability to upgrade FWA devices with a LTE solution capable of achieving up to 600 Mbps.