Qualcomm unveils most powerful 5G modem

(Image credit: Image Credit: Jejim / Shutterstock)

We haven't even gotten our hands on the first 5G-enabled smartphones, and we already have a second generation 5G modem courtesy of Qualcomm.

Called the Snapdragon X55 5G, the modem comes with a couple of welcome improvements, and will be offered to the company's partners 'in the coming months'.

First and foremost – speed. It's significantly faster than its predecessor, the X50. Unlike the older model which could achieve maximum speeds of 5 gigabits, Qualcomm claims the X55 can develop up to 7 gigabits per second.

Keep in mind that these are absolute maximum figures in a controlled environment. Don't expect these speeds out in the wild just yet.

The second big upgrade is its efficiency. According to The Verge, the Snapdragon X55 is more power efficient, and that is achieved by offering support for adaptive antenna tuning for sub-6GHz 5G.

The device is also smaller, as it is now compatible with Qualcomm's new mmWave antenna module. That means it should take up less space in mobile phones and similar devices.

But The Verge also says that this device isn't designed with 5G smartphones in mind. Sure, it will probably be used in smartphones as well, but its primary use case should be connected cars and other IoT devices.

Those are the biggest upgrades to the modem lineup, with a couple other minor ones which you can find on this link.

Image Credit: Jejim / Shutterstock