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Qualcomm claims 5G standalone mmWave milestone in China

Noting 5G standalone mmWave is poised to unlock new capabilities for enterprises, mobile chip giant reveals high-level mmWave performance in anticipation of commercial deployment in China

Qualcomm Technologies has announced it has achieved groundbreaking 5G standalone (SA) mmWave performance, laying the groundwork for expanded commercial mmWave deployments.

Explaining the driver for its interest in this part of the next-gen mobile ecosystem, Qualcomm said the number of global internet users was set to grow significantly, and that 5G SA mmWave would help enable more industries and users to access unparalleled experiences and capabilities.

The new benchmark was performed in China with partners including ZTE, Nokia Shanghai Bell and CICT Mobile. The tests also included core performance metrics such as single-user throughput, user plane and control plane latency, beam switching and cell handover.

The tests demonstrated 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, allowing greater flexibility to deploy 5G and meet higher capacity demand.

Devices powered by the Snapdragon X65 5G Modem-RF System were connected to network infrastructure equipment provided by ZTE, Nokia Shanghai Bell and CICT Mobile. The companies achieved more than a 7.1 Gbps download peak rate using a DDDSU frame structure and more than a 2.1 Gbps upload peak rate with a DSUUU frame structure, and a low latency of 3.6 ms. All the tests were completed under the guidance of the China Academy of Information and Communications Technology (CAICT) and China’s IMT-2020 (5G) Promotion Group.

“Today is another significant milestone for 5G mmWave,” said Durga Malladi, senior vice-president and general manager of cellular modems and infrastructure at Qualcomm Technologies.

“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,” he said. “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.”

Read more about 5G mmWave

Qualcomm first began to show work based on the Snapdragon X65 Modem-RF system for 5G mmWave in China in July 2021.

At the time, it claimed it had completed the world’s first 5G mmWave data connection with support for 200MHz carrier bandwidth, claiming the milestone was made possible by the software-upgradable architecture of its Snapdragon system.

Qualcomm’s benchmark was achieved using a smartphone form-factor test device powered by the flagship Snapdragon X65, and by using Keysight Technologies’ 5G Network Emulation Solution, which employs the company’s UXM 5G Wireless Test Platform to flexibly support a wide range of spectrum band requirements.

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