OnQ Blog

MWC 2019: 5G is here, and it's time to celebrate

It’s official — 5G is here. Qualcomm ushered in this next generation of connectivity by applying 30 years of mobile leadership. 5G is the culmination of years of investment — intensive R&D, standards development, prototyping, interop testing, and product development — and the excitement is evident at MWC19 Barcelona. Multiple flagship 5G phones and devices are now debuting, 5G networks and infrastructure are rolling out, and as a result of this massive industry effort, 5G-enabled experiences will soon be in our hands. Years in the making, this is truly a moment to celebrate.

From inventing the once-thought-impossible technologies needed for 5G to helping create the 3GPP 5G NR specifications that pave the way to global standardization, our team has worked tirelessly and, despite a challenging year, helped make the 5G launch a reality. We were even able to accelerate the release by a year. We’re thrilled to see it all come to life, and we can’t wait for everyone to experience 5G.

Over the last few days, several 5G devices powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 Mobile Platform and Qualcomm Snapdragon X50 5G Modem were announced. I congratulate our customers on these flagship 5G-enabled devices: the LG V50, Samsung Galaxy S10 5G, Xiaomi Mi MIX 3 5G, and ZTE Axon 10 Pro 5G. With these smartphones, along with the previously announced Motorola z3 with 5G moto mod and those on the horizon from nubia, OnePlus, OPPO, Sony, and Vivo, the Android ecosystem will be populated with a range of 5G flagship devices in 2019. Our infrastructure ecosystem and operators from around the world are also here in full force, truly making MWC a 5G moment.  

5G is purpose-built to deliver multi-gigabit speeds and ultra-low latency, as well as extreme reliability, scalability, and capacity. But even better are the user experiences these technological advancements are unlocking on smartphones — real-time video collaboration, multi-player AR gaming, and near-instant access to cloud services will be the new reality in our 5G world.

Just think about the impact on the apps we use every day. Our simulation shows 5G technology enables up to 10X improvement in download speeds and up to 20X improvement in browsing latency. And as mobile video streaming continues to climb in popularity, 5G will significantly boost this performance too; we can expect streaming 4K videos and higher resolution with 5G versus 1080p with 4G LTE*. As a result, nearly every part of our lives — from the way we shop to how we socialize, communicate, and collaborate online — is destined to be faster, smarter, and more reliable. 

These 5G benefits extend to categories and devices beyond smartphones, as well. This includes mobile hotspots like those from HTC, Inseego, and NETGEAR. Fixed wireless access 5G hardware from NetComm and others will bring more choices for fixed broadband. Plus, a new generation of wireless modules from companies like Quectel, Sierra Wireless, and Telit will let inventors build 5G connectivity into all sorts of consumer, enterprise, and industrial applications. And speaking of industrial IoT, today we’ve also announced an ongoing research collaboration on 5G NR with Bosch.  

There’s also our new Qualcomm Snapdragon X55 5G Modem, our second-generation 5G modem, which is designed to enable the next wave of 5G devices coming by the end of this year. Additionally, we announced the world’s first mobile platform with integrated 5G, further reinforcing our role in providing the global mobile ecosystem with the flexibility and scalability needed for broad and fast 5G adoption. These 5G offerings include Qualcomm 5G PowerSave technology to enable smartphones with the battery life users expect today comparable to that of current 4G LTE devices. For computing, the Qualcomm Snapdragon 8cx 5G Compute Platform will enable the first generation of commercial 5G Always On, Always Connected PCs — making it possible for PC makers to deliver the power and performance of a premium thin and light PC, while offering amazing battery life and transformative 5G experiences to the modern workplace. For the auto industry, the newly announced Qualcomm Snapdragon Automotive 4G Platform and the Qualcomm Snapdragon Automotive 5G Platform are designed to provide unmatched support for rich in-vehicle experiences and both vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V) and vehicle-to-roadside infrastructure (V2I) communication, all aimed at enhancing the driving experience.

At Qualcomm, we invent to transform how the world connects, computes, and communicates. 5G is an evolution of all three, unlocking the next generation of technological progress. We promised 5G in 2019, and we delivered — now we can all tap into it to navigate the world and create new technologies and experiences. And as with every new connectivity standard, the biggest payoffs of 5G will be the applications and breakthroughs we can’t even conceive of yet.

It’s a moment for celebration, not just for our team of engineers and inventors, but also for the entire mobile industry. We’re on the verge of a new leap in technological breakthroughs, as I expect 5G will remove barriers to invention and usher in a new age of rapid innovation: Welcome to 5G, and welcome to the Invention Age.

The possibilities are endless.

*Comparison of 5G in mmWave and Sub-6 Ghz vs. LTE Cat. 12

Qualcomm Snapdragon, Qualcomm Snapdragon 5G Modem, Qualcomm 5G PowerSave, Qualcomm Snapdragon Automotive, and Qualcomm Snapdragon 8cx 5G Compute Platform are products of Qualcomm Technologies, Inc. and/or its subsidiaries.

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