At the company's "5G Day" event in San Diego yesterday, Qualcomm announced that it had secured 18 OEM partners to build 5G devices using its new X50 5G modem in 2019. Notable among them are handset makers Nokia (HMD), Sony, Xiaomi, Oppo, Vivo, HTC, LG, ASUS, and ZTE. Conspicuously absent at the time of this writing is Samsung, though the two companies did just announce a long-term cross-licensing agreement, so you'd have to think they were on track to build a phone with this new modem, too.
Other companies in the list can be found in the press release below, though most of the others are in the component or supply chain side of the business. Read More
The HTC U11 is a good phone, but it's getting dated thanks to its 16:9 display ratio, large bezels, hardware navigation keys, and odd-looking fingerprint sensor. Luckily, HTC seems to be sorting all that with the U12, which was apparently displayed at a 5G industry event with just a bit of covering-up. Read More
The 4G era has not been kind to Sprint. It went from a strong number three in the US wireless market to a distant fourth place behind T-Mobile. The company hopes that the move to 5G will help it regain market share and compete on network quality. CEO Marcelo Claure now says the carrier will begin its 5G rollout in the first half of 2019, putting it ahead of the other national carriers. However, that new network will likely come with higher plan prices. Read More
Billions of devices, from phones and tablets to self-driving cars and connected dishwashers, are thirstily awaiting the rise of 5G wireless connectivity, and the big wireless carriers are scrambling to bring these powerful new networks to market. According to documents obtained by Axios, however, AT&T, Verizon, and T-Mobile might be nudged out of the race to 5G—not by an industry competitor, but by the U.S. government. Read More
Every carrier is clamoring to roll out a 5G network, or at least something they can reasonably market as 5G. After a long, long development period, the 3GPP wireless governance organization has released the first official 5G standard, known as 5G NR. Formalizing the 5G standard gives carriers and hardware makers the pieces they need to begin moving full speed ahead toward a 5G future. Maybe we can get this transition done without anyone re-branding their 4G service as 5G. Read More
5G is still a few years away for most of us, but networks and tech companies are laying the groundwork for it right now. One year ago, Qualcomm announced it was developing its first 5G-capable mobile modem, the X50. If you're not familiar with mobile SoCs, the modem is the component of a phone that connects to a cellular network. Qualcomm promised speeds of up to 5Gbps, with an expected ship date of 2018. Read More
We learned a few months ago that T-Mobile spent big in the FCC's recent 600MHz spectrum auction. The carrier dropped $7.99 billion on the spectrum licenses, which it has now officially been granted. It's wasting no time putting them to use. T-Mobile says it will begin rolling 600MHz coverage out to select markets over the summer. Read More
This is Sprint's Magic Box, the world's first all-wireless small cell, which promises to improve LTE data coverage and download speeds indoors. The plug-and-play unit is aimed at both small businesses and regular customers and offered at no extra cost, with availability subject to qualifying locations. Read More
Everyone's favorite performance-artist-CEO has put up another amazing video about his company's plans for 5G. We announced T-Mobile's recent purchase of whole swaths of the 600MHz spectrum, and today CEO John Legere announced in one of his regular videos exactly how it plans on using it. Some of it will be going to expand current 4G LTE capacity and penetration, but a portion is to be set aside for their future 5G implementation. Read More
I didn't think it would be AT&T, but I knew we could count on one of America's lovely carriers to open the door to the complete and utter ruination of any agreed-upon definition of "5G." Today, AT&T announced a bunch of new 4G LTE features (which is what they are) were being rolled out to its network, and it's given these features a name: 5G Evolution.
Now, the reason 5G has a qualifier is simple: because this isn't 5G. It'd be like taking the inline 4-cylinder engine out of your car, replacing it with a V6, but saying that you're now running a V8 Evolution, because hey, you're closer to a V8 than you were before. Read More