OnQ Blog

Qualcomm FastConnect: Raising the bar for mobile connectivity with advanced Wi-Fi 6E and Bluetooth audio

May 28, 2020

Qualcomm products mentioned within this post are offered by Qualcomm Technologies, Inc. and/or its subsidiaries.

Unprecedented mobile performance demands require unparalleled connectivity innovation. Together with our 5G leadership driven by our Qualcomm Snapdragon Mobile Platforms, two new Qualcomm FastConnect connectivity systems are raising the bar for the next generation of mobile Wi-Fi and Bluetooth performance.

The Qualcomm FastConnect 6900 and 6700 Mobile Connectivity Systems are built from the ground up to meet the challenges of today’s and tomorrow’s immersive mobile experiences. Signature Wi-Fi 6 series features are now available in the newly minted 6 GHz band, or Wi-Fi 6E, for multi-gigabit speeds (up to 3.6 Gbps with FastConnect 6900), low latency performance, and superior Wi-Fi capacity. In parallel, integrated Bluetooth 5.2 and advanced audio features deliver meaningful improvements to audio quality, reliability, and responsiveness. 

What does this mean for your future smartphones and computing devices? For starters, you get Wi-Fi powerful enough to serve as a backbone for burgeoning mobile gaming and augmented reality apps as well as Bluetooth audio fit to handle today’s gaming and video lip sync challenges and emerging audio sharing scenarios. In other words, whether you’re running a mission-critical application, playing your favorite online game with your friends, or streaming episodes of your favorite show in 4K, the FastConnect 6900 and 6700 systems can easily meet your Wi-Fi and Bluetooth needs, even in heavily congested areas.

New 6 GHz spectrum + new FastConnect systems = new Wi-Fi experiences

It would be difficult to overstate the impact of the FCC’s recent decision to allocate almost 1,200 MHz of new spectrum in the 6 GHz band for unlicensed use in the U.S. This new spectrum band more than triples the total spectrum now available for Wi-Fi, but that’s just the beginning. The 6 GHz band is largely unoccupied, meaning it’s impervious to interference from two decades of legacy devices, and new devices will utilize Wi-Fi 6 capabilities and efficiencies making better use of the band from Day 1. The spectrum is also contiguous, making widespread utilization of wider (faster) channels, such as 160 MHz channels, much more practical.

Think of it this way – no matter how fast you want to drive, you can’t move faster than the traffic ahead. Stuck behind a slow-moving truck, even a Ferrari will have to tap the brakes. However, with one of these FastConnect systems under the hood, it can shift onto the 6 GHz highway with several wide and empty lanes (making slow moving traffic a thing of the past).

While the new spectrum creates a massive opportunity for connectivity innovation, as is the case with any new technology, implementation matters most. Here’s how we’re leading the pack with our Wi-Fi 6E connectivity systems: 

  • Portfolio optimizations to accelerate 6 GHz benefits for premium and mass-market smartphone tiers:
    • FastConnect 6900 boasts staggering 3.6 Gbps speeds – the fastest of any mobile Wi-Fi offering in the industry – delivering performance fit for premium devices and experiences.
    • FastConnect 6700 delivers impressive Wi-Fi 6E performance, approaching 3 Gbps for mass-market smartphone tiers. 
  • Already available with our FastConnect 6800-enabled platforms, our differentiated multi-user traffic management techniques, with universal support for uplink and downlink MU-MIMO and OFDMA technologies, are forged from decades of research and development. These technologies pay even higher dividends in the 6 GHz band where higher capacity and channel bandwidths are offered. 
  • These eye-catching performance specs are the results of a number of key capabilities:
    • Qualcomm® 4K QAM: This advanced modulation technique sends more data over a set amount of Wi-Fi spectrum than those who might be leveraging 1K QAM.
    • 4-Stream (2x2 + 2x2) Dual Band Simultaneous (DBS): This game changing feature, which is now available with 6 GHz operation on FastConnect 6900, provides for a myriad of possible ways to harness multiple antennas and bands to transmit or receive data. This capability provides superior performance without tradeoffs common in other two-stream implementations. 
    • Dual-band 160-MHz channel support: This high-bandwidth feature harnesses up to seven additional non-overlapping channels in the 6 GHz band, in addition to those already available in the 5-GHz band.
  • VR-class low latency: Applying our Wi-Fi 6 and connectivity know-how to the 6 GHz band helps us drive latency down to <3 ms for a new class of responsiveness, providing the foundation for explosive growth in mobile gaming and XR applications.

Alongside Wi-Fi 6E, FastConnect 6900 and 6700 subsystems are packed with Bluetooth innovation to meet the growing need of high-quality, responsive, and robust audio connections for mobile gaming, video conferencing, wireless video streaming, and other mobile applications. For example, support for the latest Bluetooth 5.2 standard in a Dual Bluetooth Antenna configuration means increased reliability and range. In addition, Qualcomm aptX Adaptive and aptX Voice can deliver 96-kHz music and 32-kHz voice call quality — wire-class audio without the wires. And Bluetooth link and codec innovations deliver superior responsiveness. Devices with FastConnect systems on board are ready to harness emerging LE audio experiences such as audio sharing and one-to-many broadcasts like listening to a song, movie, or voice call on multiple headsets.  

A leader in wireless innovation for more than 30 years, Qualcomm Technologies is continually raising the bar for state-of-the-art connectivity and driving transitions across Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and cellular. Building on our mobile leadership and R&D investment, FastConnect 6900 and 6700 systems are designed to address modern connectivity challenges and demands, and lay a strong Wi-Fi 6E and Bluetooth audio foundation. With the power of 5G and the premium performance of our Snapdragon Mobile Platforms, we’re helping our customers deliver next-generation connectivity and the mobile experiences users deserve. 

Qualcomm FastConnect, Qualcomm 4K QAM, Qualcomm aptX and Qualcomm Snapdragon are products of Qualcomm Technologies, Inc. and/or its subsidiaries.

Opinions expressed in the content posted here are the personal opinions of the original authors, and do not necessarily reflect those of Qualcomm Incorporated or its subsidiaries ("Qualcomm"). Qualcomm products mentioned within this post are offered by Qualcomm Technologies, Inc. and/or its subsidiaries. The content is provided for informational purposes only and is not meant to be an endorsement or representation by Qualcomm or any other party. This site may also provide links or references to non-Qualcomm sites and resources. Qualcomm makes no representations, warranties, or other commitments whatsoever about any non-Qualcomm sites or third-party resources that may be referenced, accessible from, or linked to this site.

Dino Bekis

‎VP & GM - Mobile & Compute Connectivity, Qualcomm Technologies