Qualcomm reveals 5G Fully Integrated Antenna For Smartphones
On Monday 23rd July, Qualcomm has revealed the “world’s first fully-integrated 5G millimeter wave (mm Wave) and sub-6GHz RF modules” for smartphones and other mobile devices. The size of the modules are smaller than a coin and 4 antennas built-in.
Qualcomm claims handsets with such integrated modules will be available for launch on the 1st Quarter 2019. With this broadcast, the qualcomm has solved the major issues with a 5G, like earlier there was no 5G antenna that could fit inside the phone. In terms of the rollout of a network standard like 5G, there are several moving parts and obstacles. The new Qualcomm QTM052 mm Wave antenna module family and the Qualcomm QPM56xx sub-6 GHz RF module family pair with the Snapdragon X50 5G modem, and promises to deliver modem-to-antenna capabilities across several spectrum bands.
The company says that it will now be done in a very compact footprint that is suited for integration in mobile devices. The 5G millimeter wave (mm Wave) spectrum operates at a higher frequency than 4G, and provides more bandwidth at faster speeds and lower latency. While it may say of high-speed and higher bandwidth for modern smartphones, until now, mm Wave signals have never been used for mobile wireless communications due to the several technical and design challenges like one of the biggest problems with millimeter waves (mm Waves) for 5G is overcoming signal interference, as they’re easily disrupted by something as simple as someone walking in between a transmitter and receiver.
Qualcomm says these problems impact almost every aspect of device engineering, including materials, form-factor, industrial design, thermals, and regulatory requirements for radiated power. Some companies have said mm Wave highly impractical for mobile devices and networks and improbable to materialize. To overcome the problems, there is a requirement of multiple mm Wave antennas, but they have been too big to fit inside of a smartphone. The QTM052 mm Wave antenna modules by Qualcomm work in tandem with the Snapdragon X50 5G modem to help overcome the challenges associated with mm Wave.
Qualcomm says in its blog, they support advanced beam forming, beam steering, and beam tracking technologies, greatly improving the range and reliability of mm Wave signals. They feature an integrated 5G NR radio transceiver, power management IC, RF front-end components and phased antenna array. Also, they support up to 800MHz of bandwidth in the 26.5GHz to 29.5GHz (n257), as well as the entire 27.5GHz to 28.35 GHz (n261) and 37GHz to 40 GHz (n260) mm Wave bands. But, QTM052 modules integrate all the functionalities in a compact footprint. Qualcomm says that up to four of the models can be integrated into a phone and this will allow manufacturers to continue offering smaller form factors along with 5G speeds.