India may not be 5G-ready yet, but 5G-ready devices are set to break cover in the world’s second largest smartphone market by the end of this year. Unlike the first wave of 5G-ready devices, that were expensive top-tier offerings that never made it to India, the second wave is set to get a lot cheaper thanks to Qualcomm bringing the next-generation connectivity tech to more mainstream hardware.
At IFA 2019, Qualcomm has confirmed that smartphones powered by its mid-tier Snapdragon 7 Series 5G mobile platform will be ready for prime time by the end of this year. At the same time, even more affordable 5G smartphones powered by its budget Snapdragon 6 Series 5G mobile platform will be available sometime in the second half of 2020.
Qualcomm has also announced that as many as twelve partner OEMs will be integrating Snapdragon 7 Series 5G mobile platform in their future 5G mobile devices – including Oppo, Realme, Xiaomi’s Redmi, Vivo, Motorola, HMD Global (for Nokia smartphones) and LG.
Oppo spin-off brand Realme is perhaps the first of the lot to come up and independently confirm that it will globally launch 5G smartphones by the end of this year and it will also be “among the first to launch smartphones powered by Snapdragon 7 Series mobile platform with integrated 5G.” No further details have been shared.
Specific details about Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 7 Series 5G mobile platform (as well as Snapdragon 6 Series 5G mobile platform) are also scarce as of the moment – Qualcomm says more details will be revealed closer to commercial availability. All we know for now is that the Snapdragon 7 Series 5G mobile platform will be based on a 7nm manufacturing process and come with “5G integrated into a SoC (System-on-Chip) and support all key regions and frequency bands.” Additionally, the upcoming platform is also said to bring “select premium-tier features, including next-gen Qualcomm AI Engine and select Qualcomm Snapdragon Elite Gaming features, to a broader audience.”
Realme is meanwhile also working on a true-blue flagship phone with Qualcomm’s top-of-the-line Snapdragon 855+ processor (unspecified release date) and is gearing to launch its 64MP quad camera toting Realme XT phone in India on September 13.
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