Qualcomm believes that it has solved a serious barrier to the deployment of 5G technology with its new Qualcomm QTM052 mmWave antenna and Qualcomm QPM56xx sub-6 GHz RF module families. These modules are designed to work in tandem with the Qualcomm Snapdragon X50 5G modem in preparation for the arrival of 5G connections in 2019.
The arrival of 5G is currently being held back by limitations with the short wave lengths that the technology intends to use. While the mmWaves allow for extremely high data speeds, they are unable to pass through solid objects. Something as simple as putting a hand in front of the antenna would cut off all connectivity.
Qualcomm is not saying how it has solved the problem, but this likely comes in the form of being able to mount up to four such modules on a single device.
The company is already working with partners to find the optimal configuration for the 5G antenna modules, with devices scheduled to begin appearing in the first half of 2019. That said, don’t expect the rollout of 5G to go as smoothly as 4G LTE; seeing that the network will require an entirely different infrastructure.