Published on February 10th, 2021 | by Adrian Gunning
Qualcomm Announces Second-Generation 5G Fixed Wireless Access Platform with 10 Gigabit 5G Connectivity for Homes and Businesses
Qualcomm Technologies, Inc. today announced the Qualcomm 5G Fixed Wireless Access (FWA) platform gen 2. The new platform, powered by the fourth-generation Qualcomm® Snapdragon™ X65 5G Modem-RF System, will enable new business opportunities for mobile operators by allowing them to offer fixed internet broadband services to homes and businesses using their 5G network infrastructure. The new FWA platform also features the second generation extended-range Qualcomm® QTM547 mmWave antenna module, support for extended-range high power 5G sub-6 GHz, the world’s first 5G sub-6 GHz support with eight receive (RX) antennas, and support for Qualcomm® Dynamic Antenna Steering technology.
The platform also includes the Qualcomm 5G Fixed Wireless Access Platform gen 2 Reference Design, which will enable manufacturers to commercialize 5G fixed wireless access devices quickly and cost-effectively, allowing consumers to experience a faster and more reliable internet connection with peak speeds of up to 10 Gigabit 5G. This comprehensive platform is designed to expand fixed wireless access reach and performance – helping operators to make this new “last mile” broadband option more widely available across urban, suburban and rural environments using their 5G network infrastructure.
Qualcomm Technologies is also announcing the new Snapdragon X12+ LTE Modem for FWA devices that rely solely on 4G networks. The Snapdragon X12+ modem enables device manufacturers and operators the ability to upgrade FWA devices with a LTE solution capable of achieving up to 600 Mbps.
Why It’s Important: With its extended-range 5G mmWave, extended-range high power 5G sub-6 GHz, and sub-6 GHz support with 8 receive antennas, the new platform will help improve networks capacity, expand coverage, and deliver unsurpassed user experience. Qualcomm Fixed Wireless Access Platform gen 2 with its advanced capabilities such as mmWave-sub-6 GHz aggregation, and unprecedented bandwidth aggregation for downlink and uplink, will further extend the flexibility offered to operators to utilize their infrastructure and spectrum assets to expand their fixed wireless service with ease to new areas. It also helps to eliminate capital expenditures for dedicated fixed network rollouts, along with the need to get permits or have to send technicians out to every consumer’s home for installation. This can result in a smoother rollout, faster time to commercialization, and the ability to deliver 5G’s multi-gigabit speeds and low-latency connectivity to a wider customer base within their coverage footprint.
Additionally, OEMs will be able to accelerate Customer Premise Equipment (CPE) launch times and improve CPE performance and lower development efforts. All of this enables OEMs to scale diverse FWA product portfolios that accommodate the requirements of every major region around the world.
“This announcement further advances our efforts in addressing the “connectivity divide” by helping provide operators a cost-effective way to deliver fiber-like internet speeds wirelessly over 5G to rural, suburban and dense urban communities,” said Gautam Sheoran, senior director, product management, Qualcomm Technologies, Inc. “The Qualcomm 5G Fixed Wireless Access Platform gen 2 is a comprehensive, cost-effective, and scalable solution for operators and OEMs to deploy 5G’s multi-gigabit speeds and low-latency connectivity to homes, small businesses, schools, hospitals and town halls.”
Key Technologies and Solutions Featured:
• Snapdragon X65 Modem-RF System: The fourth-generation Snapdragon X65 Modem-RF System powers the Qualcomm 5G Fixed Wireless Access Platform gen 2, offering expanded 5G mmWave and sub-6 GHz connectivity capabilities.
• Qualcomm QTM547 mmWave Antenna Module: Paired with the Snapdragon X65 5G Modem-RF, the extended-range Qualcomm QTM547 mmWave antenna module delivers a comprehensive modem-to-antenna platform for 5G mmWave CPE designs. It supports different power class requirements mandated by regulators (Power Class 1 and Power Class 5) and wide “scan angle” coverage, with over 30 percent improvement from the previous generation. The solution also supports Qualcomm Dynamic Antenna Steering which enables the antenna module to dynamically rotate to receive the strongest signals and achieve better performance.
• Extended-range 5G sub-6 GHz support: Qualcomm 5G Fixed Wireless Access Platform gen 2 supports extended-range high power 5G sub-6 GHz which can help network operators improve coverage and capacity, improvements up to 25 and 10 percent, respectively.
• Sub-6 GHz support with eight receive antennas: Qualcomm 5G Fixed Wireless Access Platform gen 2 is the world’s first solution to offer Sub-6 GHz support with 8 receive antennas for 5G FWA CPEs. With this support, the new platform can help network operators expand coverage and capacity, with improvements up to 35 and 20 percent, respectively. It will also enable them to enhance consumer experiences in challenging radio conditions at the edge of the cell and help lock on to a stronger, cleaner signal from the tower and boost download speeds.
• FWA Reference Design: The Qualcomm 5G Fixed Wireless Access Platform gen 2 reference design is powered by Snapdragon X65 5G Modem-RF system and features Qualcomm QTM547 mmWave antenna module, and sub-6 GHz with 8 RX antennas. With this new reference design, device manufacturers will have unprecedented ability and ease in the development of Fixed Wireless Access products for their customers.
Looking Forward: The Qualcomm 5G Fixed Wireless Access Platform gen 2 expands the wireless ecosystem as an additional option that allows consumers to leap into 10 Gigabit 5G and experience a faster, more reliable internet connection at home. The plug-and-play installation process brings them a fast installation process without the need for technicians. Furthermore, the conveniences of installation will ultimately create more high-speed internet choices for the consumer.
The platform is expected to be in commercial devices in the first half of 2022. For technical details please visit the Qualcomm 5G Fixed Wireless Access gen 2 webpage. For an insider’s view at the new Modem-RF Systems and what they mean for the industry and the world, please watch the ‘What’s Next in 5G’ video series.