The dream of 4K TV would be to have 120FPS and HDR in the future, and it seems we will with the latest "Phase B" guidelines from the Ultra HD Forum.
The group recently published their "Phase B" guidelines that tease a world of next-gen 4K broadcast technology, ushering in 100-120FPS video, with a fallback to 60FPS. On top of that, the group is wanting dynamic HDR video through the likes of Dolby Vision and SL-HDR, while Dolby AC-4 and MPEG-H would take care of the audio side of things.
4K 120FPS video with HDR and higher-quality audio is going to blow out the bandwidth, so the Forum is hoping Content Aware Encoding will drop those requirements.
Qualcomm threw down the 5G gauntlet last year, but with their massive 3Gbps speeds teased in 5G simulation tests during MWC 2018 the company is taking it to the next level. Intel is now teasing its own huge 5G push where the company will be powering a "broad-scale" 5G network at the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo.
Intel has announced it will be working with NTT Docomo to build a 5G network for the 2020 Olympic games in Japan, which is something Intel is expecting to be the biggest 5G deployment in the world, at the time of the Olympics.
Better yet, Intel is promising insane 8K 360-degree video streams over their 5G network for the 2020 Olympics in Japan. We should see 4K and 8K cameras and even drones capturing 4K video by then, with these cameras 5G-enabled. Intel says that it will also be powering 5G integration in vehicles, with teh company already seeing 1Gbps while watching 4K video and on-the-move at 30kmph (18.6mph).
I plan to attend the 2020 Olympics in Japan purely as a technology enthusiast and fan of the next big thing, especially since it's Japan of all places. But with the huge push into AI, self-driving cars, 8K video, 5G networks and more being highlighted and used during the 2020 Olympics, I'll be there for sure.
Qualcomm will enter an entire new level of dominance once they get 5G into the world, but just how fast will those speeds be? We know to expect over 1Gbps, but up to 5Gbps? We're talking over 500MB/sec downloads over a cellular connection and not Wi-Fi, but that is the future.
Qualcomm decided to run 5G simulated tests during Mobile World Congress, where they modeled two real-world conditions in Frankfurt, and San Francisco. The locations are based on existing cell sites and spectrum allocations in two popular, and very dense cities.
The simulation took into consideration things like geography, varying user demands on the network, a bunch of different devices with varying levels of LTE and 5G connectivity for different speeds across devices in order to simulate what to expect from a 5G device.
Qualcomm's tests on the Frankfurt simulation leaps from 56Mbps on the existing 4G connection to a mind-melting 490Mbps on 5G, a huge 7x increase in web browsing speeds instantly. Qualcomm expects to see over 90% of users pushing past 100Mbps download speeds on 5G, compared to just 8Mbps on LTE.
Last year Intel had announced their new XMM 8000 series of 5G modems, and now they have partnered up with vendors to make mobile PCs with 5G a reality in 2019.
Intel is working with Dell, HP, Lenovo, and Microsoft to make this reality sooner rather than later. In fact, if you attend Mobile World Congress (MWC), you will be able to see a new detachable 2-in-1 PC with an early 5G modem and an i5 8th Generation processor.
Intel will demo 5G by showing live streaming of a video over the 5G network. With the increase in throughput that 5G offers, the technology will change the way we experience data. Intel wants us to imagine untethered VR, downloading a 250MB file in seconds in a parking lot, and even multi-player gaming in your autonomous car.
With new technologies, there are always obstacles to maneuver around and delays are quite common, but it does seem that Intel's 5G hardware is on track to land in 2019.
Qualcomm has been leading the 5G game for what feels like years now, and now we have news that Sprint has promised to launch mobile 5G services nationwide in the first half of 2019.
Sprint boss Marcelo Claure explained during their recent quarterly earnings conference call with investors: "We're working with Qualcomm and network and device manufacturers in order to launch the first truly mobile [5G] network in the United States by the first half of 2019. This development will put Sprint at the forefront of technology innovation on par with other leading carriers around the world... We believe our next-gen network will truly differentiate Sprint over the next couple of years".
US telco competitor T-Mobile has promised nationwide 5G support in 2019, finishing it in 2020, with Sprint now in the lead for the next generation of mobile connectivity.
A San Jose-based startup named Energous, has announced that it has been granted approval by the FCC for their power-at-a-distance wireless charger that uses the WattUp Mid Field transmitter.
WattUp Mid Field transmitter converts electricity to radio frequencies which then are beamed to nearby devices that support wireless charging and have a corresponding receiver. This new technology brings forth a new wave of wireless charging, as previous generations of the idea required physical contact with the wireless charging device, Energouses product can be used in a 15 feet radius from the station.
The WattUp will have the ability to be able to charge multiple devices at once, from phones to tablets, keyboards and any other piece of technology that is fitted with a corresponding charging receiver. Just like Wi-Fi, the WattUp is manufacturer-agnostic meaning that no matter what brand receiver users may have the wireless charging will still be available to use.
Intel has just increased its threat against Qualcomm in a very big way by announcing their new XMM 7660 LTE modem, something that will really push the limits of download speeds over our mobile devices.
The new XMM 7660 LTE modem from Intel is capable of reaching 1.6Gbps which is an incredible leap from the 1Gbps offered under Qualcomm's Snapdragon 845 processor. Intel's new LTE modem will be one of the fastest in the world, and could be inside of the iPhone 9.
Intel will need to provide some real-world tests of the 1.6Gbps teased by its XMM 7660 LTE modem, but I think seeing 1.5GB/sec downloading onto my phone will be so scary I'd pass out. My 100Mbps fiber connection at home is already mighty fine, but 1.6Gbps from my phone? Holy hell.
Verizon is looking to charge its consumers an additional $10 per month for 4K video streaming, after splitting their unlimited plans into two tiers; one capped streaming at 480p, while another went up to 720p (and 1080p for tablets).
If you want that restriction removed, and were paying $85 per month, it'll turn into $95 per month but give you up to 4K video streaming. The additional $10 per month charge is per line, so if you have a family plan it's going to cost you a bit more per month if you want high quality video.
With all of the issues going on in Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands, the FCC fast-tracked 60 x Project Loon internet ballons to fly over both countries for six months.
Alphabet is behind Project Loon, with Google's parent company pushing cellular data capabilities from the skies. Project Loon would return internet connectivity to countless residents. Project Loon was recently deployed in Peru after floods affected the city, with Alphabet teaming with Peruvian network Telefonica to help get the signals from the ground and allocate them into the right spectrum and services.
An Alphabet spokesperson told Wired: "Things are a little more complicated because we're starting from scratch. Loon needs be integrated with a telco partner's network-the balloons can't do it alone".
For those who have no idea what Project Loon is, the balloons provide internet access by "relaying communications between Alphabet's own ground stations connected to the surviving wireless networks, and users' handsets". Awesome tech, for a great cause, Alphabet.
Google have announced that everyone's favorite assistant is back, in a new slimmed-down miniature version. The Google Home Mini is everything you've came to love from the Google Home range only in a smaller, more versatile miniature smart speaker. Featuring a 360 degree speaker with 40mm drivers, the physical size of the Google Home Mini is about the size of a mini-donut at 3.86inch diameter and 1.65inch in height.
A direct competitor to Amazon's Echo Dot, both smart speakers are very similar with Google Home Mini utilizing Google Assistant. Featuring Bluetooth, touch controls for volume and a physical switch for muting voice commands, Google have provided 3 colors to suit your preference- Chalk, Charcoal and Coral and is finished in a soft-touch mesh material.