OnQ Blog

Streaming video on mobile: See the difference a modem makes [VIDEO]

My favorite thing about my smartphone is watching video, and apparently I'm not the only one.

Video over cellular networks is experiencing enormous proportions of traffic and traffic growth. In 2013 Verizon Wireless CEO Lowell McAdam stated that video accounts for 50 percent of traffic on Verizon’s cellular network. A report from Cisco estimated that in 2013, video accounted for 53% of traffic on cellular networks and predicts that it will account for 69% by 2018.

Since video is dominating cellular usage with no end in sight, and delivering video to users under the highly varying mobile environment is a challenging task for any cellular modem, Qualcomm® aggressively tests modem performance under a wide variety of signal conditions. The goal is to create a modem that delivers smooth video streaming, so your videos stream instantly without painful loading times.

Qualcomm’s modems can support an exceptional video streaming experience on mobile devices across LTE tiers—whether it's on Snapdragon™ 400 (LTE-TDD Cat4), Snapdragon 801 (LTE-FDD Cat4), or Snapdragon 805/Gobi™ 9x35 (LTE-FDD Cat6) processor based devices.

To illustrate this, we connected some of the latest commercial mobile devices based on Qualcomm modems to computers and streamed 4K Ultra HD video over test networks through the modems and onto the computers. Note that the display of the mobile devices under test was OFF so the modems were effectively just routing 4K video from the test network to the computers.  

In parallel, we attempted to stream the same 4K Ultra HD video with the latest devices based on our competitors’ LTE-TDD Cat4, LTE-FDD Cat4 and LTE-TDD Cat 6 modems. While Qualcomm modems received data without any interruptions, competitor modems paused and struggled. Watch the videos below to see the results for yourself:

LTE-FDD Cat4 Modem Comparison

LTE-TDD Cat4 Modem Comparison

LTE-FDD Cat6 Modem Comparison


Qualcomm Snapdragon processors and Qualcomm Gobi modems are products of Qualcomm Technologies, Inc.