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Home / Business / MediaTek's new 5G-enabled chip is just the kind of competition Qualcomm needs

MediaTek's new 5G-enabled chip is just the kind of competition Qualcomm needs



Image: MediaTek

We're still in the early days of 5G A quick look into the smartphone world reveals that Qualcomm is in the market Compared to other chip manufacturers has a head start. Almost every 5G phone on the market today is powered by a Qualcomm modem. Qualcomm was recently slapped for violating antitrust laws. With the next high-end mobile chip, MediaTek could finally deliver the much-needed competition in the 5G range.

While the chip itself has no official name, MediaTek claims that its upcoming SoC (System-on-a-Chip, AKA) processor is the "world's first fully integrated 7-nanometer 5G SoC" and so on The company hopes to lower the price of future 5G smartphones and mobile devices. This is a tempting idea, because anyone who has seen the entry-level price of mobile phones, like the Galaxy S1

0 5G for $ 1,300 and the LG V50 5G for $ 1,150, knows it's hard to get that huge premium ignore that goes with today's 5G enabled mobile phones. [19659004] In addition, MediaTek's 5G SoC will be the first chip to feature the recently announced Cortex-A77 CPU and the Mali G77 GPU from ARM. The Cortex-A77 is a further development of ARM's A76 CPU and features improved efficiency in addition to a redesigned architecture. If there are any signs of this, it may be the same CPU core that we will see in Qualcomm's next flagship chip later this year. Elsewhere, MediaTek's 5G-SoC will also support camera sensors with a resolution of up to 80 MP and faster AI processing thanks to the third generation APU.

It remains to be seen how MediaTek's 5G SoC behaves in real life, but at least on paper, its features and specifications look solid.
Photo: MediaTek

And when it comes to 5G performance, MediaTek's chip can deliver sustained download speeds of 4.2 Gbps and upload speeds of up to 2.5 Gbps. However, the MediaTek chip has an important limitation because its integrated modem supports only 5G in the sub 6 GHz and 2.5 GHz bands. For mobile service providers like AT & T and Verizon in particular (which only use mmWave frequencies in their 5G network), the MediaTek chip is therefore not an option, as 5G modems and their antennas need to be tuned frequently for optimal data speeds Set of radio frequencies.

But that might be fine, as some other carriers are planning to use sub-6GHz or 2.5GHz spectra when they light up their 5G networks later this year: T-Mobile and sprint. This puts MediaTek in a good position to compete with Qualcomm for the supply of 5G chips for future T-Mobile and Sprint phones, especially if the proposed merger of T-Mobile and Sprint is approved. Ultimately, however, it is not the end users who are left to the phone manufacturers, which chip is best suited for their devices. At least there is a choice.

Either way, with only a handful of chip makers in the world capable of producing 5G-enabled chips and SoCs, it's good to know there may be at least one alternative to all Qualcomm-enabled 5G phones soon. Soon, this will be relative, as even MediaTek does not expect consumer-ready devices to be available with the new 5G Soc by the first quarter of 2020.


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