A number of major wireless network operators have opted to test out a Qualcomm Technologies modem in trials of 5G smartphone technology.
The MNO’s concerned include some of the world’s biggest telecoms: AT&T, British Telecom, China Telecom, China Mobile, China Unicom, Deutsche Telekom, KDDI, KT Corporation, LG Uplus, NTT DOCOMO, Orange, Singtel, SK Telecom, Sprint, Telstra, TIM, Verizon and Vodafone Group. The firms are planning to test 5G connectivity with smartphone form factors, and to that end have opted to use Qualcomm’s Snapdragon X50 5G modem, which is capable of supporting downloads speeds of “several gigabits per second”, according to a statement from Qualcomm.
Qualcomm says the trials will start this year, and will use the sub-6 GHz and mmWave bands. The trials will seek to operate in reference to the 3GPP Release 15 5G NR standard, the world’s first 5G connectivity standard collaboratively produced by a wide range of mobile industry brands.
Pointing to a broader effort and timeline, Qualcomm Inc. President Cristiano Amon said the planned trials “demonstrate how we are working with global operators to fuel growth and innovation in the mobile industry and make 5G a reality by supporting a large number of expected commercial launches in 2019.”
The news comes soon after Qualcomm’s announcement that it had strengthened its alliance with Samsung in a strategic partnership that will extend “through the transition to 5G.”