Qualcomm unveils 2Gbps X24 modem, hinting at 7nm Snapdragon 855 for the Galaxy S10

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Despite its spats with Apple, and the subsequent loss of one of its biggest clients to Intel, Qualcomm remains the top dog when it comes to cellular connectivity, and it just announced the first wireless modem that can hit 2 Gbps 4G LTE downloads, the X24, and the first chip announced to use the 7nm production process, ready to go into "commercial devices" by year's end. 

That's much faster than the X20 in Snapdragon 845 which is arriving with Galaxy S9. That one can take advantage of up to 1.2 Gbps speeds, just like the current top modem, found on the Huawei Mate 10 Pro - if your carrier can provide those, of course. As for Intel's modems that iPhones are likely to use exclusively going forward, the fastest announced so far is the XMM7060 that may end up in the 2018 iPhones, and that one supports 1.6 Gbps at the most.

The X24 gear can still be considered pre-5G, though, as phones with it would still need to have the 4G LTE modem part that can hit 2 Gbps, with an extra chippery on board that could use whatever early services the US carriers' 5G networks can offer. We aren't really talking only about speeds here, as to experience true 5G they'd need to use millimeter-wave networks that are only feasible to cover city centers with, and the 5G modem set for those is the X50, coming in 2019. The other aspects of a 5G network are no less important, though, such as extremely low latency, and the ability to hook up much more devices to a single tower.

We know what you are thinking - when can I get 5G on my phone, right? Well, as soon as next year, maybe with Snapdragon 855 on the Galaxy S10, or whatever Qualcomm and Samsung name those products, if the X24 there is packaged with a X50 "subsystem," as per Qualcomm's Sherif Hanna quote below. Oh, and if the first 7nm chipset announced is a cellular modem that is likely to go into Snapdragon 855, we can safely assume that the move to 7nm is happening for Galaxy S10, and should do wonders for its performance/battery life ratio.

source: Qualcomm

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