Qualcomm Snapdragon X24 doubles down on Gigabit LTE

The X20 Gigabit LTE modem baked into Qualcomm's upcoming Snapdragon 845 SoC is pretty fast, hitting download speeds as fast as 1.2 Gbps. Hardware partners looking for even more performance can choose the just-announced discrete Snapdragon X24 LTE modem. Qualcomm says the X24 is the first announced Category 20 LTE modem supporting up to a whopping 2 Gbps of downstream bandwidth.

The new modem supports 7x carrier aggregation on its downlink and 4×4 MIMO on up to five aggregated LTE carriers. On the upstream side, the modem supports 3×20 MHz carrier aggregation and 256-QAM for upload speeds up to 316 Mbps.

The Snapdragon X24 is the first product of its type built on a 7-nm FinFET manufacturing process, which means all that speed could arrive in a smaller package than the X20. The company didn't say who was fabricating the chips, but the modem maker has a strong relationship with Samsung. The X24 is Qualcomm's eighth-generation LTE modem altogether and the company's third-gen Gigabit LTE unit.

Qualcomm will show off the Snapdragon X24 LTE modem in live demonstrations at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona at the end of the month. The company has already started sampling chips to its partners and expects commercial products on the market before the end of the year. The early partner list for the X24 includes Ericsson, Telstra, and Netgear.

Comments closed
    • Usacomp2k3
    • 2 years ago

    To me, the next improvements need to be:
    1/ User density. This would be the # of users/tower.
    2/ Range. The range hasn’t improved at all for 4G over 3G. I don’t see modems helping either. Is this an antenna issue with the devices or with the towers?
    I don’t see this modem or the new 5G standards helping with either of these.

    • shank15217
    • 2 years ago

    Seems to me they need to spend more time and money upgrading the wireless tower backbones. I don’t think most towers have above 10Gbps backbones.

    • UberGerbil
    • 2 years ago

    I’m pretty unfamiliar with the state of wireless modems at this point, and I rarely gaze at teardowns and look up spec sheets for part numbers, so I’m going to ask what may be a dumb question: how independent are these chips from the wireless frequencies they use? In other words, can this same silicon be used with any of the current (or future) bands worldwide, assuming it is paired with appropriate analog RF circuitry? Obviously phone mfrs decide to support only a subset of the available bands, which is why we have different (sub-)models for different regions, but it’s the same modem in all of them? Or does Qualcomm have to roll out region-specific versions of this chip also?

      • willmore
      • 2 years ago

      This chip is likely the baseband. That means it needs to be paired with RF chips (mixer, frequency generator, LNA, PA) which will handle the higher frequency processing and translate that to/from baseband.

      Which chips you pair this with will determine the bands it supports.

      This chip can be reasonably ignorant of the frequencies it ends up TX’ing and RX’ing on. There will be firmware that will need to be able to speak to the chips that do the RF processing–to set the right frequency generation values. So, that will need to be phone/model specific.

      But this chip should be relatively immune to that.

        • DancinJack
        • 2 years ago

        This is my understanding as well. AFAIK OEMs use the same Qcomm baseband, with different RF gear in different regions.

    • Peter.Parker
    • 2 years ago

    This is really exciting news, but there is another metric that will be important, since this is destined for mobile devices: power consumption.
    If it goes through my phone battery in a matter of minutes, this is kind of useless.
    A second discussion will be about the network abilities to transport this data at the maximum speed, but really, this is a matter of ISP adaptability.
    If and when this is will be available/affordable to the masses, this eliminates effectively the cable ISP model.
    And by George, I have been waiting for this a long time. Imagine, you can move anytime and anywhere, there are no more installation fee or poor choices based on a small ISP pool.
    Basically, in the future, if you like your ISP, you can keep your ISP.

      • UberGerbil
      • 2 years ago

      And instead of a cable ISP model, you have a wireless carrier ISP model. So your carrier becomes your ISP. Your poor choices are based on a small carrier pool. If you like your wireless carrier, great. If you — like many people — hate your wireless carrier at least as much as most people hate their cable ISP, you can switch… if there’s another wireless carrier in your region to switch to. And if there is, it’s probably part of the same company as the cable ISP you’re trying to escape.

      Meet the new boss, same as the old boss.

        • DancinJack
        • 2 years ago

        Except worse in many cases.

        Just because you can be mobile with your “wired-like” connection doesn’t mean the companies providing that connection get any better.

        • Peter.Parker
        • 2 years ago

        I realize that the wireless ISPs can become (at least nowadays) as limited as the cable ISPs. But my point was that this is going to work only when this is available and affordable to the masses. Right now, it isn’t exactly feasible. But we can imagine a time when your router is basically a cell phone (or a router with a sim card) on a data plan only, and the monthly charge and download limits compare to the rates of cable ISPs today and all networks are available in all regions of the nation. When (or if) that happens, I don’t see why Verizon/T-Mobile/AT&T/Sprint networks wouldn’t be trying to compete to become your ISP.

    • chuckula
    • 2 years ago

    Now, for the first time EVAR you can finally exceed your monthly data cap in mere seconds instead of a couple minutes.

      • willmore
      • 2 years ago

      Let’s see a reasonable estimate for cost is Project Fi which charges $10 for 1GB.

      2Gb/s is 250MB/s, so that’s $2.50/second with this chip.

      4 seconds to a 1GB cap
      8 to 2 GB
      16 to 4 GB
      32 to 8 GB
      40 to 10 GB
      and a total of:
      60 to 15GB.

      Unless your cap is >15GB, you would be able (under impossible ideal conditions) exceed it in the first minute of the month.

        • chuckula
        • 2 years ago

        [quote<]Unless your cap is >15GB, you would be able (under impossible ideal conditions) exceed it in the first minute of the month.[/quote<] Somebody tell Bone Thugs-n-Harmony that I've got an idea for their 2018 remix.

          • derFunkenstein
          • 2 years ago

          Sorry, chuckula. [i<]Under Impossible Ideal Conditions[/i<] is already the title of their next album.

      • Stochastic
      • 2 years ago

      This is why I don’t get very excited about wireless network speed advances.

      • shank15217
      • 2 years ago

      Wrong, providers have wised up, now you just get throttled from 2Gbps to 2Kbps in a matter of seconds. Go unlimited BW!!

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This