Samsung revealed a key piece of its 2019 road map at the annual Qualcomm Snapdragon Summit in Maui. It looks like Samsung and mobile partner Verizon are shooting for a 5G release sometime in the first half of next year.
Qualcomm, which is also light years ahead of Intel on the modem front, will be the key hardware partner here as well, producing the Snapdragon X50 5G NR modem and antenna modules via the Snapdragon Mobile Platform.
This means that Samsung joins a handful of companies promising to deliver 5G smartphones in 2019, including OnePlus and Motorola — though the latter will be accomplishing this via Moto Mod. Samsung’s chief competitor Apple, meanwhile, is not expected to embrace the technology until 2020. It is expected to arrive late, claim to have invented the technology and charge double for it. The only way that Apple is going to avoid any significant embarrassment is by paying what it owes Qualcomm and dumping Intel fairly sharpish.
Samsung has already publicly embraced the technology, showing off a 5G home router way back at Mobile World Congress 2017. Verizon have been demonstrating home 5G service in a smattering of US cities, including Houston, Indianapolis, Los Angeles and Sacramento.