Global Mobile Industry Commits to 5G mmWave Tech

Article By : Qualcomm Inc.

5G mmWave expands its momentum across multiple regions including China, Europe, India, Japan, Korea, North America and Southeast Asia.

At Mobile World Congress (MWC) 2021 in Barcelona, Spain, a contingent of mobile communications companies announced their collective support for 5G mmWave technology globally—including key players from a growing number of regions including China, Europe, India, Japan, Korea, North America and Southeast Asia. The industry leaders aim to build on the existing momentum behind 5G mmWave, which allows them to address the significant increases in user data demand, and to expand the role of the mobile ecosystem in supporting economic development across many industries.

Major global mobile industry leaders advancing current 5G mmWave momentum include Airtel, AT&T, Casa Systems, China Unicom, Chunghwa Telecom, Deutsche Telekom, Electronics Telecommunications Research Institute (ETRI), Elisa, Ericsson, Fastweb, Fibocom, Gongjing Electronic, HMD Global, HONOR, Infomark Co., Ltd, Innowireless Co., Ltd., KDDI CORPORATION, Kyocera, MeiG, Motorola, NBN Co, Nokia, NTT DOCOMO, OPPO, Optus, Orange, Partron Co., Ltd., Quectel, Rakuten Mobile, Samsung Electronics, Singtel, SoftBank Corp, Sunsea AIoT, TCL Communication, Telia Finland, Telstra, TIM, True Corporation Plc., UScellular, vivo, Vodafone, Xiaomi, and ZTE. These companies collaborate with Qualcomm Technologies, Inc. to drive the availability of 5G mmWave networks and devices.

“The global deployment of 5G mmWave is now inevitable. It is essential to achieve the full potential of 5G and those embracing 5G mmWave will find themselves with a competitive advantage,” said Cristiano Amon, president and chief executive officer-elect, Qualcomm Inc. “Support from companies across the ecosystem further demonstrates the global scale and maturity of 5G mmWave. We are proud of our industry leadership in the development, standardization and commercialization of 5G mmWave and honored to work with major mobile industry leaders to accelerate its deployment worldwide.”

5G mmWave uses abundant spectrum resources in frequencies above 24GHz to complement sub-6GHz rollouts and unleash the full potential of 5G. The technology allows leading operators to add massive capacity to cellular networks, enabling them to deliver multi-gigabit wireless speeds and low latency connectivity. These capabilities can help mobile operators to address everyday subscriber expectations for fast and responsive connectivity, and to expand 5G into new opportunities such as fixed wireless, enterprise (offices, campuses), and vertical applications and services, such as Ultra HD video security, and precise remote guidance and control in various scenarios like telemedicine, smart factories, and smart ports.

Several mobile industry leaders shared the following thoughts on 5G mmWave.

“The mmWave band is emerging as important element of the 5G ecosystem as it offers tremendous potential for use cases such as Fixed Wireless Access that can bridge the urban-rural broadband divide in economies like India,” said Randeep Sekhon, chief technology officer, Bharti Airtel. “Airtel has been allotted mmWave spectrum in the 28 GHz band by the Government of India for the purpose of 5G trials and is already preparing relevant use cases. We are pleased to note the global momentum on mmWave deployments and look forward to working with Qualcomm Technologies and other stakeholders to accelerate the development these technologies.”

“AT&T is using mmWave 5G to bring super-fast speeds and enhanced connectivity to high-traffic venues such as stadiums, arenas, airports, entertainment districts and campuses,’ said Jeff Howard, vice president, mobile device portfolio, AT&T. “Currently, AT&T 5G+, our name for mmWave 5G, is available in parts of 38 cities and in more than 20 venues across the country. By the end of 2021, AT&T expects 5G+ will be available in parts of more than 40 cities and to more than 40 venues across the country.”

“As a disruptive new technology, 5G mmWave delivers transformative service opportunities and user experiences beyond what is possible with traditional wireless networks,” said Steve Collins, senior vice president, access devices, Casa Systems. “This technology has reached a stage of maturity where both performance and implementation are ready for mass adoption. Casa Systems is proud to collaborate with Qualcomm Technologies to offer truly disruptive broadband connectivity to service providers worldwide.”

China Unicom is committed to advancing the maturity of 5G technology and fostering 5G ecosystem. During the MWC Shanghai 2021, China Unicom worked with dozens of leading companies such as Qualcomm Technologies, ZTE Corporation and GSMA to showcase extreme performance and rich applications enabled by 5G mmWave. In May 2021, China Unicom, the IMT-2020 (5G) Promotion Group, ZTE Corporation, Qualcomm Technologies, and TVU Networks achieved the world’s first DSUUU frame structure-based 5G mmWave 8K video upstreaming demonstration through lab testing. This demonstration verified the superior uplink capability of 5G mmWave frequencies, which attaches great importance for meeting the needs of massive bandwidth in a plethora of future 5G vertical applications. As an important component of 5G, mmWave has advantages of high bandwidth, massive capacity and low latency to effectively satisfy the connectivity demands across verticals including ensuring network services in large competitions and events as well as addressing use cases in smart factory, smart campus and smart port.

As the official partner of the Winter Olympic Games Beijing 2022, China Unicom is deploying 5G facilities in and around the Olympic venues and will provide high-quality 5G commercial services with a set of leading 5G technologies, to further promote the Olympic concept of higher, faster and stronger, and to present a wonderful and extraordinary high-tech Olympic event to the world.

“In Dec. 2020, we have cooperated with Qualcomm Technologies to unveil the world’s first smart factory powered by a private 5G mmWave network at ASE Group in Taiwan,” said Dr. Rong-Shy Lin, senior executive vice president and chief technology officer, Chunghwa Telecom. “We expect that based on the high-bandwidth and low-latency characteristics of 5G mmWave, it will drive diversity and innovative applications in specific vertical fields.”

“Qualcomm Technologies and ETRI have been in a strategic collaboration since the CDMA era and have been working together for the development of mmWave 5G small cell,” said Seung Chan Bang, senior vice president, Electronics Telecommunications Research Institute (ETRI). “With 5G mmWave small cell technology, we can provide enhanced wireless experience and the true value of 5G to customers and industries.”

“Elisa, together with its technology partners, is constantly seeking technological solutions for our customers to tackle the ever-increasing demand for mobile broadband capacity from consumer and corporate customers, and to enable a broad range of new 5G services,” said Jarno Niemelä, head of mobile access technology, Elisa. “The world needs pioneers in this area, and thanks to Finland’s excellent policy around frequencies, the 26 GHz auction took place already in 2020. This has given Elisa the opportunity to start experimenting with millimetre-wave 26 GHz technology, which has made it possible to achieve a huge over-the-air downlink speed of 8 Gbps, as well as to prepare for the new era of 5G service provisioning.”

“We see growing interest in Millimeter Wave as the technology that delivers multi-gigabit speeds and extreme capacity for mobile broadband users,” said Per Narvinger, head of product area networks, Ericsson. “FWA users can also enjoy ‘fiber-like’ experience with Ericsson innovations that we piloted with Qualcomm Technologies and many service providers across the world. Millimeter Wave and 5G enable new creative use cases to explore, such as mixed reality, media, remote healthcare and smart manufacturing. As a leader in mmWave, Ericsson welcomes a wider ecosystem support for this important technology.”

“Fastweb is a strong believer in 5G technology as an enabler of ultra broadband connectivity and we are proud to be among the first operators in Europe to deploy a commercial UltraFWA network based on a 5G mmWave spectrum,” said Marco Arioli, chief technology officer Fastweb. “We started deploying our network a few months ago and our plan is to cover approximately 12 million households in the next 3 years. 5G mmWave in particular is proving to be disruptive in its capability to provide a valid alternative to FTTH and other UBB wireline technologies.”

“5G mmWave momentum requires a significant amount of efforts from all parts of the ecosystem to roll out. As a global leading provider of wireless communication modules, Fibocom is delighted to work with Qualcomm Technologies to contribute to the popularization of 5G mmWave,” said Lingpeng Ying, CEO of Fibocom. “Powered by the Snapdragon® X65 and X62 5G Modem-RF Systems, Fibocom’s FM160W and FG160W modules steers through this new world of 5G mmWave with massive performance and capacity, delivering 5G high-speed wireless connectivity to meet everyday user expectation.”

“We are very glad to have a comprehensive cooperation with Qualcomm Technologies in the 5G field,” said Zumin Hu, chief executive officer, Gongjin Electronic. “Gongjin invested in and launched mmWave products earlier, and we are very glad that more and more operators around the world are investing in 5G mmWave construction. Gongjin is very optimistic about the future market prospect of mmWave communication. We will promote the development of 5G industry with Qualcomm Technologies in the future.”

“5G mmWave is a key enabler that helps realizing the full potential of 5G – providing unprecedented speeds and addressing the increase in data demands across smartphones. It offers significant benefits to operators and will allow for the fastest multi-gigabit speeds and low latency connectivity,” said Rosario Casillo, senior director advanced concepts and technologies, HMD Global.  “HMD Global continues to invest in 5G mmWave as this transformative technology is set to bring the next-level performance and user experiences beyond what is possible today.”

“HONOR is delighted to collaborate with Qualcomm Technologies in research of 5G solutions. Delivering great mobile experiences has always been in HONOR’s DNA, and we recognize the great potential of 5G mmWave technology in many important scenarios,” said Samuel Deng, president of research and development management department, HONOR Device Co., Ltd. “We look forward to working closely with Qualcomm Technologies, operators and other partners to achieve a future filled with endless possibilities.”

“Together with industry leaders, Qualcomm Technologies is advancing the global industry into the 5G mmWave era, providing unprecedented speeds and significant benefits across various industry,” said Hyuk Choi, chief executive officer, Infomark Co., Ltd. “We have high expectations on the 5G era and we plan to lead this industry sector as it is now possible for us to develop an array of mobile devices supported by the cooperation with Qualcomm Technologies.”

“5G mmWave technology led by Qualcomm Technologies offers the most versatile capabilities and brings significant benefits to our small cell products,’ said Young-soo Kwak, chief executive officer, Innowireless Co., Ltd. “With small cells emerging as one of the most critical solutions in expanding in the 5G mmWave ecosystem, Qualcomm® 5G RAN Platforms will enable Innowireless in delivering high quality 5G coverage for both indoors and outdoors. We will do bring our best efforts to leverage the locally developed high-end quality 5G solution as a new growth engine.”

“We commercially launched mmWave service in 2020 and are seeing mmWave as an integral part to our 5G strategy,” said Tatsuo Sato, vice president and managing officer, technology planning, KDDI CORPORATION. “We believe that mmWave unleashes the full potential of 5G for high throughput and capacity and look forward to continue to work with Qualcomm Technologies to further enhance our mmWave service on KDDI’s 5G network to deliver innovative 5G experiences to our customers.”

“Kyocera has a long history of delivering high-quality rugged mobile devices with Qualcomm Technologies’ solutions enabling best in class wireless connectivity to improve mobile productivity for verticals such as public safety, construction, healthcare as well as active outdoor enthusiasts,” said Vipul Dalal, divisional vice president, Kyocera International, Inc. “Our new DuraForce Ultra 5G UW ultra-rugged smartphone, with blazing fast 5G mmWave connectivity, provides highly reliable bandwidth with low latency, enhancing user experiences, for new ways to work, engage and play such as multi-access edge computing and augmented reality. mmWave will help deliver on the full promise of 5G now and in the future.”

“We are very happy to cooperate with Qualcomm Technologies on 5G technology. More than 150 carriers around the world have investment in mmWave technology. By 2035, mmWave technology will bring economic benefits of USD 565 billion to the world. With ultra-bandwidth, mmWave will create new market for FWA and local network,” said Du Guobin (Benjamin), chief executive officer, MeiG Smart Technology Co. Ltd. “We are happy to provide a full range of 5G mmWave products, including industrial box, IDU and ODU. They can meet the requirements of mmWave across scenarios for carriers and customers, speed up the development of 5G industry and market, ensure that our customers enjoy MeiG Smart product advantages and give a support to 5G mmWave commercial use.”

“5G mmWave is at the heart of realizing the full potential of 5G – providing unprecedented speeds and addressing the increase in data demands across smartphones and other connected computing devices. It has significant benefits to consumers and will allow for the fastest multi-gigabit speeds and low latency connectivity,” said Doug Michau, executive director of NA business development, Motorola. “Motorola continues to invest in 5G mmWave; it is a core part of our roadmap as 5G mmWave is a transformative technology that will deliver the next-level performance and user experiences beyond what is possible today.”

“It’s great to be part of a global technology community that is constantly pushing and searching for new ways to bring the benefits of connectivity to more homes and businesses around the world,’ said Ray Owen, chief technology officer, NBN Co. “We were delighted to have set our 7.3 km mmWave world record in January 2021, and we are very pleased to see other operators recently raising the bar to 11.5 km. This growing momentum will help network operators define the most cost-effective, and spectrum-efficient ways to integrate 5G into their evolving network architectures. We look forward to supporting its development as another important technology that will help meet the needs of regional and rural fixed wireless users.”

“mmWave spectrum is the fuel for the rocket backpack that makes 5G fly,” said Jan van Tetering, senior vice president, head of Europe, Nokia. “With 5G mmWave, we hold the key to unlocking a new category of user experience in dense urban areas as well as new, value-creating use cases across various industries.”

“As NTT DOCOMO, we launched 5G services with Sub-6 GHz in March 2020 and started mmWave from September 2020 by utilizing allocated 5G frequencies, both boosting downlink and uplink speeds. Especially its 5G uplink speeds of mmWave will become the key to  enhancing enterprise, eSports, and stadium solutions where handling of live uplink data is critical,” said Naoki Tani, executive vice president, chief technology officer, NTT DOCOMO, INC. “NTT DOCOMO will continue aggressive efforts to expand 5G coverage area our area coverage with both Sub-6 GHz and mmWave spectrum bands, further increase speed and capacity, and enhance our network with the introduction of new technologies such as MEC, so that we can provide high-speed, high-capacity, low-latency services to even more customers.”

“We are excited to be growing our collaboration with Qualcomm Technologies around R&D and testing of 5G mmWave devices to help realize the full potential of 5G,” said Tony Chen, Founder and CEO, OPPO. “As an early advocate and pioneer of 5G deployment, OPPO will launch its first commercial device supporting mmWave 5G in the near future, further empowering new user experience in the 5G era.”

“With the global 5G rollouts in place, Qualcomm Technologies’ 5G technologies is the key enabler for us in developing products that unlocks the true potential of 5G from sub-6GHz to mmWave,” said Jong-Koo Kim, chief executive officer, Partron Co., Ltd. “Partron is developing 5G embedded modules using the Snapdragon 5G modem-RF system to provide flexibility across virtually all deployment types. I’m quite sure that Parton could contribute 5G service expansion including mmWave by adopting Qualcomm Technologies’ most advanced 5G technologies.”

“Quectel has been closely collaborating with Qualcomm Technologies and other ecosystem partners to drive 5G IoT innovation. We are excited that our 5G mmWave modules, including the commercial RM510Q-GL module and the next-generation RG530F and RM530N modules powered by the Snapdragon® X65 and X62 5G Modem-RF Systems will help expand 5G technology into more applications,” said Patrick Qian, chief executive officer, Quectel. “Offering enhanced features such as multi-gigabit data speeds and ultra-low latency connectivity, Quectel’s mmWave modules have supported the commercial deployment of 5G in many vertical sectors including Fixed Wireless Access (FWA), 4K/8K live streaming, robotics, AR/VR gaming and many more.”

“mmWave is an important part of our spectrum portfolio and we are seeing very positive performance on our deployment with low latency and high speeds of 1.77Gbps. Thanks to the cloud-native architecture of our network, this will continue to improve with software enhancements,” said Tareq Amin, representative director, executive vice president and chief technology officer, Rakuten Mobile, Inc. “We are proud to collaborate with Qualcomm Technologies as we expand our mmWave deployment and look forward to providing our customers with an even greater 5G experience.”

“Over the years, Samsung and Qualcomm Technologies have been collaborating to innovate wireless technologies. In 2020, Samsung launched one of the first 5G mmWave indoor small cell – Link Cell – powered by Qualcomm® 5G RAN Platform for small cells, helping wireless operators expand their 5G network capabilities and seamlessly link outdoor and indoor 5G experiences,” said Wonil Roh, senior vice president and head of product strategy, Networks Business at Samsung Electronics. “With our extensive endeavors in research and development to pioneer cutting edge technologies, Samsung will continue to support wireless operators and enterprises in expanding and advancing 5G services.”

“Enterprises and consumers will stand to benefit with mmWave adoption which is key to enabling innovative business solutions and enhancing everyday experiences,” said Mark Chong, Group Chief Technology Officer, Singtel. “With mmWave’s higher bandwidth, it has the potential to deliver applications like cloud gaming and augmented reality as well as enterprise solutions such as autonomous guided vehicles and smart manufacturing. We expect these new use cases to contribute to 5G’s major business drivers and will be working with various companies to co-create 5G-powered solutions.”

“SoftBank Corp. launched 5G mmWave commercial services in March 2021 as a key component of 5G to offer high throughput and high capacity services even in dense traffic situations,” said Keigo Sugano, senior vice president and head of the product division in the consumer business unit, SoftBank Corp. “We are going to add mmWave products to our lineup and are pleased to see the 5G mmW ecosystem is growing globally, as it is critical for us to further utilize the technology to offer the fastest mobile experience to our customers.”

“Due to its high transmission quality, security and confidentiality, 5G mmWave can empower industries such as industrial manufacturing, connected-car, live broadcast, smart hospital, which can accelerate the digitization and connectivity of industry,” said Tao Yang, chief executive officer, Sunsea AIoT. “Sunsea AIoT (SIMCom) has devoted itself in the 5G mmWave field for a long time, which has launched a series of 5G modules, including SIM8300G-M2 (powered by Snapdragon® X55 Modem-RF System), SIM8360G (powered by the Snapdragon X62), and SIM8380G (powered by Snapdragon X65). As an important collaborator of Qualcomm Technologies, Sunsea AIoT will work with Qualcomm Technologies to drive the global 5G development.”

“The 5G mmWave deployment opens new and critical opportunities for unleashing the full potential of 5G network. We are excited to join the revolution with our carrier and technical partners in providing more seamless connection experience with even faster data speeds and ultra-low latency empowered by 5G mmWave,” said Aaron Zhang, chief executive officer, TCL Communication. “The launch of TCL 10 5G UW handset last year was our first move in 5G mmWave and it also demonstrates our commitment to 5G For All. We are planning to bring the experience to more mobile categories in the future.”

“Finland has been in the European forefront in rolling out 5G, as over half of the population has the opportunity to use the latest mobile technology,” said Janne Koistinen, 5G program director, Telia Finland. “However, to fulfill the full promise of 5G, we together need to accelerate the adoption of mmWave technology in Europe. Telia Finland is proud to join the efforts to bring this technology to life.”

“At Telstra, we believe that 5G is critical to Australia’s future prosperity and we see mmWave as an important way to expand our 5G offering,” said Channa Seneviratne, executive – technology development and solutions, Telstra. “Each year, the demand for mobile data on our network increases by around 40%. mmWave will not only help us cater for that growth into the future but also enable a range of new use cases and services that will benefit from the speed, latency and capacity that mmWave has to offer.”

TIM is at the forefront in the use of millimetre-wave solutions. TIM has in fact connected the first Italian factory in 5G, thanks to the creation of a dedicated private network for Exor International, an industrial company in the North East. This infrastructure – which uses millimetre wave frequencies such as those in the 26Ghz range – makes it possible to optimise Smart Factory processes, exploiting the extremely low latency and top security and reliability that characterise the dedicated indoor coverages.

“We at True are proud to have launched the first commercial 5G network in Southeast Asia that uses the 26 GHz mmWave as a cornerstone of our 5G strategy and leadership as it sets the stage for further innovations, including the development of the Industrial Internet-of-Things (IOT),” said Manat Manavutiveth, President (Co), True Corporation Plc. “I strongly believe that True5G is ready to shape Thailand to become a sustainable intelligent nation.”

“At UScellular, we are committed to collaborating across the industry to drive innovation that helps bridge the digital divide and enhance the wireless experience for our customers,” said Narothum Saxena, vice president of technology strategy and architecture, UScellular. “Our recent testing results highlight the extended range possibilities that 5G mmWave technology provides and reinforce the important role that wireless plays in keeping people connected across urban and rural communities.”

“As a longstanding collaborator of Qualcomm Technologies in innovation, vivo has so far launched more than 30 models of 5G smartphone powered by Snapdragon mobile platforms across the world since the commercialization of 5G,” said Yujian Shi, Senior Vice President & CTO, vivo. “With vivo’s further exploring in 5G technology and standard development, vivo and Qualcomm Technologies have deepened cooperation in mmWave technology to optimize our 5G smart devices and keep bringing more powerful and richerer mobile connectivity experiences to consumers worldwide.”

“mmWave, an important component of 5G technology, has undoubtedly enormous prospects in applications. Xiaomi has been devoted to developing and testing mmWave technology and device. Even before international communications standard organization 3GPP set the 5G standards, Xiaomi formed a 5G R&D team and achieved mmWave IoDT in October 2018, taking the lead in the industry,” said Cheng Chang, vice president, Xiaomi. “By closely working with Qualcomm Technologies in advancing technologies, we expect to launch the mmWave devices based on the Snapdragon mobile platforms next year and offer our global users with increasingly smooth and superior network experiences.”

“The thriving digital economy has become a key driver of high-quality economic development in the world. As a ‘road builder of digital economy’, ZTE is committed to helping accelerate digital transformation across industries with leading information and communications technology (ICT),” said Fei Ni, CEO of ZTE Mobile Devices. “In the past year, ZTE has worked with collaborators such as Qualcomm Technologies in enabling massive mmWave commercial devices to connect to the networks of global major operator customers. Looking ahead, we will jointly drive the evolution of 5G mmWave technology to further expand into a rich variety of use cases across industries to unlock the value of 5G with high bandwidth, low latency and massive connectivity.”

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