Qualcomm made a bunch of new announcements at MWC 2017, ranging from the trials and deployment of 5G connectivity to support for self-driving vehicles. The company, along with a number of other companies such as Vodafone, Eriscsson, Intel and more, has announced their support for the acceleration of 5G New Radio (NR) standardisation. The company said that it has expanded the Snapdragon X50 5G modem family to include support for 5G New Radio (NR). The new devices are designed to support multimode 2G/3G/4G/5G functionality in a single chip, which would provide connectivity across 4G and 5G networks. The company notes that commercial products integrating the new 5G NR modems from the Snapdragon X50 family are expected to be able to support the first large-scale 5G NR trials and commercial launches starting in 2019.
Besides this, the company also said that it is partnering with Ericsson and Vodafone to test 5G interoperability and conduct an over-the-air field trial based on 5G New Radio (NR) specifications. Further, Qualcomm and Ericsson have partnered with NTT DOCOMO in Japan and Telstra in Australia to accelerate 5G NR deployment in those countries.
Besides supporting the development of 5G connectivity, Qualcomm also announced that it was working with TomTom on using its Drive Data Platform for high-definition (HD) map crowdsourcing. The platform uses vehicle sensors to collect and analyse data and share it with other vehicles. TomTom will use this information for it HD Map, including RoadDNA, which assists automated vehicles precisely locate themselves and determine which may to maneuver. Qualcomm has also partnered with the Mercedes-AMG Petronas Motorsport Formula 1 team. The two conducted trials utilising the 802.11ad multi-gigabit Wi-Fi for racecar data communications. The initial testing conducted during last year’s Formula 1 US Grand Prix was a success. Further, Qualcomm noted that its aptX HD audio codec is starting to gain momentum and is being used by leading manufacturers of devices like smartphones, headphones, speakers, and more.