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Qualcomm claims 5G SA mmWave breakthrough

US mobile chip giant Qualcomm has managed to collaborate with some Chinese companies to hit the 7 Gbps mark over 5G.

While the press release doesn’t explicitly say so, this milestone appears to have been achieved in a test environment but using commercially viable kit. The named partners in this test are ZTE, Nokia Shanghai Bell and CICT Mobile. We know it took place in China, but not the precise location, and that the test hit peak speeds of 7.1 Gbps download, 2.1 Gbps upload, and 3.6 ms latency over an unspecified amount of millimetre wave spectrum.

Those with an interest in telecoms arcana will be excited to hear that the download test utilized the  DDDSU frame structure, while the upload one opted for the DSUUU frame structure. What’s more, the tests claim to demonstrate that mmWave achieves higher speeds and lower latency than sub-6 GHz, using 5G mmWave-only (FR2-only) deployments without an anchor on LTE or sub-6 GHz spectrum. Who knew?

“Today is another significant milestone for 5G mmWave,” said Durga Malladi, GM of cellular modems and infrastructure at Qualcomm. “As the world continues to see increased data demand, mmWave is playing a pivotal role in increasing network capacity at a lower cost for operators. We are proud to continue working with industry partners such as ZTE, Nokia and CICT Mobile, and the IMT2020 (5G) Promotion Group to push the boundaries of connectivity and enable robust consumer and enterprise experiences.”

This was all done under the benign gaze of the China Academy of Information and Communications Technology and is a welcome sign that, despite the best efforts of the US government, it’s still possible for American and Chinese organisations to collaborate over telecomsy stuff. The propagation characteristics of mmWave spectrum remain a challenge to its widespread use, but this kind of international joint effort would appear to be the best way to go about resolving it.

 

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