Qualcomm Launches Snapdragon X24, World's First 2Gbps LTE Modem

Qualcomm Launches Snapdragon X24, World's First 2Gbps LTE Modem

"The Snapdragon X24 LTE modem has been created to provide enhanced mobile broadband and deliver an extremely important gigabit coverage layer for commercial 5G networks and mobile devices that are expected to start launching in 2019", said Serge Willenegger, senior vice president and general manager, 4G/5G and Industrial IOT, Qualcomm Wireless GmbH. There are many other factors that determine network speeds other than the modem.

Those numbers represent the fastest your phone could possibly download data, but that's not what you'll realistically get each time you go online.

To achieve those 2Gbps speeds, the chip can combine up to seven connections at once, known as 7x carrier aggregation, with hundreds of potential combinations of both licensed and unlicensed spectrum to find those speeds.

Even Qualcomm is quick to admit that early 5G networks will likely have their share issues, just as the first LTE and 3G networks did.

In short, that means faster downloads and reduced power consumption.

Qualcomm has previously talked up the 5G X50 modem - boasting speeds up to 5Gpbs, but as it's a 5G chip it will appear in handsets after the X24. This allows for a relatively seamless switch between Gigabit LTE and the X50's higher multi-gigabit 5G speeds. In the initial days of 5G networks, coverage will be quite limited, so it seems like Qualcomm is taking the advance move.

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Qualcomm has announced new Snapdragon X24 LTE modem as a precursor to migration to its 5G modem sometime in 2019. We've asked Qualcomm if it can divulge more about its rollout plans for the Snapdragon X24 and will report back if we learn anything new.

Qualcomm says the X24 may be its last LTE modem. However, there are several features that distinguish the latest development from all the existing mobile modems, including the Snapdragon X20 that will come into reality with the launch of the Snapdragon 845 SoC very soon. This unprecedented feature set is created to allow devices that feature the Snapdragon X24 LTE modem to utilize all spectrum assets available from a mobile operator, whether in licensed spectrum, or with License Assisted Access (LAA). According to Qualcomm, this functionality will allow for X24-equipped devices to connect to the entire range of spectrum bands available to carriers, which would increase overall performance beyond what we have now.

It said equipment manufacturers will benefit from using the chip by offering 360-degree video, cloud computing, entertainment and "instant apps" on their devices.

System capacity is further improved through support of Full Dimension MIMO, a form of massive MIMO that is foundational to 5G, reports Qualcomm.

On the part of uplink support, the Snapdragon X24 has three carrier aggregation at a frequency of 20MHz, two LTE streams at maximum speeds of 106Mbps, and up to 256-QAM.

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