Qualcomm announced the first chips with support for Wi-Fi 6E.
The new Wi-Fi should be more reliable and faster thanks to its access to an extra range of airwaves over which to broadcast. Here are all the details.
Qualcomm Will Launch Chips For Smartphones and Routers
Qualcomm announced two sets of products, one for routers, which will start shipping immediately, and one for smartphones, which will ship in the second half of the year.
The most significant feature of these chips is the support for Wi-Fi 6E, which uses the 6GHz spectrum – recently opened for Wi-Fi in the US. Such an upgrade is also the biggest expansion of the Wi-Fi spectrum so far, which should bring more performance gains.
The routers chips fall under Qualcomm’s Networking Pro lineup, and there’ll be four chips, the 1610, 1210, 810, and 610. The chips vary in capabilities from 6 Wi-Fi streams and a top speed (theoretical) of 10.8Gbps on the high end, and 5.4Gbps on the low end to 16 streams.
Qualcomm pictures mesh routers utilizing these chips and putting the latest 6GHz spectrum to use as a backhaul to connect the units wirelessly, enabling the 5GHz range to communicate with devices.
The smartphone chips fall under Qualcomm’s FastConnect lineup, which usually ends up integrated with Snapdragon chips. There will be two options at release, the FastConnect 6900, and the FastConnect 6700, which have top speeds (theoretical) of 3.6Gbps, respectively 3Gbps. Both arrive with support for the maximum size of Wi-Fi channels, 160MHz on 5GHz, and 6GHz.
According to VK Jones, Qualcomm’s VP of technology, the transition will be extremely fast. He said: “This is going to be added very quickly.”
It’s not clear if we’ll have to wait until next year’s flagship smartphones are launched. Qualcomm has already brought its top-of-the-line Snapdragon chips for this year, and they’re now using the FastConnect 6800, that doesn’t come with 6GHz support. The company indicated that smartphone manufacturers could choose to utilize one of these recent Wi-Fi chips.