Wednesday, 05 May 2021 19:02

Ookla Speedtest data reveals 5G mmWave delivering speeds 16 times faster than Sub-6 GHz


Qualcomm has announced real-world test results demonstrating that 5G mmWave connectivity speeds on commercial devices is 16 times faster than 5G operating solely in sub-6 GHz frequencies.

Naturally, Qualcomm calls these "unprecedented results", and they were based on Ookla's "Speedtest Intelligence data" from user-initiated tests on commercial devices in the US.

We're reminded that 5G mmWave uses "ultra-wide channels to deliver exponentially faster speeds and greater capacity compared with lower frequency 4G or 5G bands.

"5G mmWave momentum continues through the world, with deployments from all major operators in the U.S. and Japan, recent deployments in Europe and South East Asia, and more coming soon in regions such as Australia and Latin America. China is also expected to deploy 5G mmWave for the Winter Olympics early next year."

Qualcomm says 5G mmWave is critical to dramatically improving the performance and advancing the variety of connected experiences in every setting, and notes this advanced technology "delivers massive bandwidth whether you’re at home with 5G fixed wireless access, on-the-go in a train station streaming TV shows, at work or school with a need for enterprise-grade connectivity, or in heavily crowded venues and similar public settings."

Qualcomm says it made "5G mmWave technology a reality and it is building breakthrough technologies and products to ensure its availability to users" having begun this work years ago, with mobile industry leader partners, prior to standardisation efforts, then moved to interoperability tests in 2017 and 2018, and "ultimately commercialised mmWave in 2019 launching multiple flagship smartphones."

The company also showcased 5G mmWave speeds of over 5 Gbps. As you can expect, Qualcomm states its commitment to making "ultra-fast 5G mmWave connectivity rapidly available to a wide array of users, and has already undertaken multiple initiatives to spread the advanced technology’s footprint," including:

  • All tiers in the current portfolio of Qualcomm Snapdragon Mobile Platforms, from 8- to 4-series, are now capable of supporting 5G mmWave
  • 100+ commercial and pre-commercial 5G mmWave devices according to GSA, including phones, PCs, mobile hotspots, customer premises equipment and modules; Virtually all powered by Snapdragon
  • Snapdragon-powered 5G phones, including all top flagship devices and models priced as low as $400
    Qualcomm Technologies is enabling mobile operators to deliver Gigabit internet access to many communities using devices based on Qualcomm 5G Fixed Wireless Access Platforms, now including extended range 5G with high power mmWave solutions
  • Radio access networks, such as small cells, are operating today on operator networks using Qualcomm® 5G RAN Platforms
  • The recently announced Snapdragon X65 Modem-RF System will further extend 5G mmWave with new capabilities such as 10 Gbps peak speeds and mmWave/sub-6 GHZ spectrum aggregation using dual connectivity for further enhanced performance.

“Our end-to-end modem to antenna solution brings together all the key 5G breakthroughs to optimise 5G connectivity using the massive bandwidth of mmWave,” said Durga Malladi, SVP and GM of 4G/5G at Qualcomm.

“With almost every major OEM offering 5G commercial devices globally, we’re playing a critical role in enabling 5G to live up to its promise of speed and power. This not only redefines the smartphone experience, but also paves the road for endless possibilities, including the further expansion of 5G into fixed wireless access, 5G private networks, compute, XR, and Industrial IoT.”

Qualcomm reminds us it will "further showcase how 5G mmWave is delivering state of the art user experiences" during its Qualcomm 5G Summit, May 19-20, with more information here

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Alex Zaharov-Reutt

Alex Zaharov-Reutt is iTWire's Technology Editor is one of Australia’s best-known technology journalists and consumer tech experts, Alex has appeared in his capacity as technology expert on all of Australia’s free-to-air and pay TV networks on all the major news and current affairs programs, on commercial and public radio, and technology, lifestyle and reality TV shows. Visit Alex at Twitter here.

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