Qualcomm unveiled its commitment to 5G (and novelty) alongside the Snapdragon 855
Qualcomm devoted much of its Tech Summit 2018 event presenting on the 'once-in-a-decade' leap forward in many aspects of its business that is the transition to 5G as the latest and greatest mobile data standard. Unsurprisingly, this will be done through the integration of the new Snapdragon (SD) 855 and X50 modem.
Qualcomm also underlined the new dimensions for smartphone AI, gaming, virtual reality and augmented reality 5G would bring. Furthermore, the summit’s keynote also featured an appearance by Justin Denison, the senior vice president of Samsung's mobile division. Denison reiterated the potential that 5G (provided by Qualcomm hardware) could offer his company.
In summary, the chipmaker emphasized the SD 855’s first-to-market attributes and features, particularly those that are 5G-based. It underpinned this message with the new tagline: “first is the new premium”. However, other bodies, the carrier AT&T included, have suggested that this is not the best route, as 5G may be unreliable and buggy at first. This concern may also be part of the reason Apple is rumored to be holding off on the new network type’s adoption for at least the next year.
In addition, the 5G-enabled devices and plans likely to be available by this time next year may also be extremely expensive. Denison himself alluded to this possibility during his presentation: the Samsung VP also suggested that it is a sacrifice consumers may have to make in order to gain access to the new network standard. However, it remains to be seen if these risks and drawbacks will pay off for Qualcomm.