Qualcomm MWC 2019 announcements
focus on its new QCA6390 Connectivity system-on-a-chip (SoC), for superior
Wi-Fi 6 and Bluetooth 5.1 including Android mobile and Windows desktop
optimisation. It also ups the ante for Wireless Quick Charge.
Qualcomm MWC 2019 reinforces that the name inside most mass market and flagship smartphones, as well as the Windows on ARM (or WOM – Windows on Mobile), is Qualcomm!
The new QCA6390 SoC is significant as it works in the Android mobile and Windows desktop environment – the latter has mainly been Intel’s province.
Wi-Fi 6 – 1.8Gbps speeds
The chip supports HT160 router band aggregation (if the
router supports it) that can offer up to 1.8Gbps speeds. GadgetGuy has been
trailing this with a D-Link HT160 enabled AC5300 router and regularly gets 1.2Gbps
on Wi-Fi 5 – bring it on!
It also has 1024 QAM which simply
means it can aggregate 2.4 and 5GHz bands simultaneously for wider bandwidth. Again, your router needs to
support this as well as intelligent load balancing.
The chip has 8×8 MU MIMO (router dependent) and better bandwidth
management, especially in congested networks. The result could be up to 2x the
distance of 2.4 and 5Mhz signals and
As you would expect it uses the latest power management and has
up to 67% savings over the previous chip. It also supports new WPA-3 security.
I love the new Bluetooth 5.x devices. 5.1 fixes many issues with
5.0 and offers
TrueWireless Stereo Plus technology
aptX audio technology
aptX playback support: aptX Adaptive
means it works well with two wireless buds offering lower latency, up to 60m
distance support and a 75% battery life improvement.
Quick Charge technology for wireless power
While Qi is a standard the way,
current chargers delivered quicker charge
was by boosting the coil output to 10 or 15W. Most devices handle that, but some like the Apple iPhone cap at 7.5W for slower charging. And the speed and efficiency of many Qi
products remain inconsistent.
GadgetGuy’s take: We need Qualcomm if only to drive innovation
Almost all the better mass market smartphones and flagships
use Qualcomm 3, 4, 5, 6 ,7, and 8 series chipsets. Huawei uses its Kirin silicon, Apple its A series and
Samsung uses a mix of Qualcomm and its Exynos SoCs. I don’t mean to take away from
MediaTek and other ARM foundries – they play in a different cost sector.
In fact, Samsung’s new S10+ uses the Qualcomm 855 in some markets and now holds the crown as the title of the world’s most advanced smartphone – until Huawei strikes back anyway.
And Qualcomm is a key driver of 5G in the mobile space. Its
X50/55 modem is the most widely adopted (of course Huawei has it’s Balong 5000).
Just as Intel drove the desktop,
Qualcomm drives mobile and is now coming to a mobile desktop near you.