Intel debuts 5G modem, Qualcomm launches new Snapdragon, connected car platform

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Intel has revealed a 5G modem supporting both sub-6GHz and mmwave deployments, which it claimed would support global deployments of next generation networks.

The chipset maker said the modem supports its existing sub-6GHz and 28GHz radio frequency integrated circuits (RFIC), which will begin sampling during the first half of 2017.

Intel said the modem, which will start sampling in the second half of the year, would be compliant with "multiple" industry forum 5G specifications, without specifying which ones, would support speeds exceeding 5GBps, massive MIMO, beamforming, low latency frame structures and advanced channel coding, as well as pair with its XMM 7360 modem to provide LTE fallback and interworking.

Aicha Evans, Corporate Vice-President and General Manager for Intel's Communication and Devices Group, said: "With the right technologies in place and reliable platforms on which to test them, the opportunities to innovate, invent and launch products and services are virtually unlimited."

Meanwhile, Qualcomm Technologies announced its latest Snapdragon processor, which is aimed at supporting premium tier smartphones and virtual reality head displays.

Among the features of the Snapdragon 835 processor are an integrated X16 LTE modem that can provide gigabit speeds, integrated 2x2 802.11ac Wave 2 Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 5, as well as optional 802.11ad for multi-gigabit speeds.

The chip is 35 percent smaller in size and can consume 25 less power than previous generation flagship chipsets. It can also support machine learning, which Qualcomm said could be used to provide better quality photography and security.

Cristiano Amon, Executive Vice president, Qualcomm Technologies, said: “The Snapdragon 835 has an unprecedented level of technology integration that supports superior battery life, improved multimedia, and exceptional photography with gigabit class speeds for fast, immersive experiences.”

The first commercial devices that run on the chip will be on the market by the end of June, Qualcomm predicted.

Meanwhile, the chipset manufacturer also updated its connected car reference platform to offer "gigabit class" download speeds through 246QAM, 4x4 MIMO and up to four carrier LTE-Advanced.

The new platform, which uses Qualcomm's Snapdragon X16 LTE modem for the first time, also supports Wi-Fi 802.11ac, Bluetooth 42 and Bluetooth Low Energy for in-car networking and satellite navigation.

Patrick Little, Senior Vice-President and General Manager, Automotive, Qualcomm Technologies, said: “Connected cars are becoming intelligent sensors on the road, not only using data for consumer use cases such as Wi-Fi hotspots and video streaming, but also collecting and transmitting critical, rich real-time information about road conditions, map updates and driver status."