The 5G phones are finally coming fast and furious. For example, Samsung's newly-announced Galaxy A90 5G brings some of the best of Samsung's smartphone know-how and 5G at a much more palatable price point. There's just one little catch: it's probably not going to be compatible with the majority of 5G networks in the US. And it definitely won't be the last such 5G phone that doesn't end up in the US this year or next as a result.
For a variety of reasons, most US carriers (T-Mobile, AT&T, and Verizon) have chosen to bank a significant part of their 5G efforts on a technology called millimeter wave, which is commonly abbreviated in the industry as 'mmWave.' This type of 5G works in an extremely high part of the RF spectrum (in excess of 24GHz, and up to 60-70GHz), and has been pushed primarily by modem and chipset developers Qualcomm as a key part of 5G's promise. Read More
Most of us have seen the ridiculous, pseudoscientific paranoia being spread about 5G, with charlatans alternately claiming it will cook you from the inside out, that it kills birds, that it's all means to control the weather, or that it's all a part of an elaborate, "deep state" conspiracy for... faster data? Well, it turns out, there may be at least one unanticipated, unintuitive side effect that mmWave 5G can have: it could mess up the accuracy of weather forecasts. Read More
5G is coming. That's a line you've no doubt read countless times by now. But just as it begins to ring false (like a wireless tech version of The Boy Who Cried Wolf), it's also more accurate than ever. In July, Qualcomm revealed new antenna for mmWave spectrum — the finnicky, high-frequency stuff that's crucial to 5G. These antenna modules were actually small enough for practical use in smartphones, a major milestone. Today at its 4G/5G Summit in Hong Kong, the chipset maker announced that it shrunk a version of those antenna modules by 25 percent, and that consumers can expect to see them in action in commercial 5G devices in early 2019. Read More
In the ongoing battle to be at the forefront of 5G, Samsung has shot into a prominent position with the Exynos Modem 5100. The electronics company and chipset manufacturer today revealed a mobile modem built to the newest 3GPP-official 5G standards that features not only 5G functionality (using both sub-6GHz and mmWave spectrum), but also support for legacy wireless technology from 4G LTE all the way back to 2G GSM/CDMA. Read More
T-Mobile has announced that it's partnered with Nokia to build its 5G mobile network. The carrier will pay Nokia $3.5 billion for "its complete end-to-end 5G technology, software and services portfolio." T-Mobile called the agreement a multiyear deal, but doesn't go into specifics, saying only that the two companies will work together "in the critical first years of the 5G cycle." Read More
It seems like 5G is one of those things that's perpetually sitting out on the horizon in tech news, but today Qualcomm took a decent step forward when it comes to a particular implementation. One of the carriers' more ambitious 5G solutions is to harness the high-frequency millimeter wave (mmWave) bands, which promise high bandwidth and low congestion, at the cost of limited coverage and some practicality concerns. But with Qualcomm's recently announced mmWave antennas, some of the issues related to it may be overcome. Read More
AT&T announced today that they're going to acquire Straight Path Communications, a holder of a number of millimeter wave spectrum licenses in the US for $1.6 billion. This brings them one step closer to realizing their AirGig plans for last-mile data infrastructure. Read More