Qualcomm is at the absolute bleeding edge of connectivity technology, with the world's first tests of 5G connections on a mobile device now completed.
The company tested the 5G internet connection on their own X50 5G modem, using the 28GHz millimeter wave frequency band. Qualcomm adds that they reached over 1Gbps with the test, but 5G is capable of much higher speeds of 5Gbps once the 5G deployments are complete.
Qualcomm also unveiled the world's first 5G smartphone reference design, which the company will use to test 5G modems, radios, and networks with smartphone makers over the next 1-2 years, as we get closer to companies releasing 5G-capable smartphones. 5G smartphones are expected in the first half of 2019, while Qualcomm's new 5G reference smartphone rocks an edge-to-edge display, and is just 9mm thick.
Qualcomm pulled out all of its engineering prowess for its X50 modem, with the company developing a new millimeter wave antenna that is about the size of a dime. Qualcomm says that it can cram two of these next-gen antennas into a smartphone, and while the antenna is the size of a dime right now, Qualcomm has plans to shrink it by another 50% over the next 12 months.