Intel challenges Qualcomm with new Gigabit LTE mobile modem

Intel HQ - gigabit lte modem

On the same day that Qualcomm announced its second-generation X20 LTE modem providing up to 1.2Gbps download speeds, Intel has unveiled its first-generation Gigabit LTE modem for use in smartphones and other mobile devices.

The XMM 7560 is capable of up to 1Gbps download speeds and 225Mbps upload speeds, reports Intel, though its unclear what average real-world speeds might eventually be. Qualcomm told The Verge that real-world speeds for the Snapdragon X16, announced in October 2016, ranged from 112Mbps to 307Mbps, and the X20 should provide a 20 percent improvement.

The true test for these hyper-fast modems, which bridge the gap with future 5G networks, is shipment in commercial handsets and a debut on a network with Gigabit LTE support (yet to arrive on most global carriers).

Qualcomm says it is currently sampling its X20 chipset and expects it to debut in commercial devices in the first half of 2018, but we won’t have to wait that long to begin seeing Gigabit devices invade the market. The first — a mobile hotspot — was unveiled in October 2016 by Qualcomm, Ericsson, Netgear and Australian operator Telstra using the Snapdragon X16. Additionally, ZTE states it is debuting a Gigabit phone at Mobile World Congress, which will likely be the first of many.

Intel says sampling of the XMM 7560 modem by manufacturers will begin in the first half of 2017 and consumers can expect devices featuring the chip to go into production shortly after.

Source: The Verge