Qualcomm also made an announcement today regarding its RF Front-End Portfolio, and it's specifically for 600 MHz, which means this really only matters for customers on T-Mobile since it is the only carrier with that spectrum right now. T-Mobile was also the first to use 600 MHz anywhere in the world, which has led to some issues for its partners that makes smartphones and other products for its network. 600 MHz is the lowest band ever used for LTE, which is a good thing but also a tricky thing. It is good because it can cover more area than 700 MHz which T-Mobile is also using, but it's the first time it's being used which caused some issues for Qualcomm and its existing RF Front-End Portfolio.
This new 600 MHz modem to antenna solution has a suite of RFFE components, which includes the QPM2622 Low-Band Power Amplifier Module, it comes with integrated duplexers, switches and an antenna coupler. It works well with the QPM2632 which is designed for mid-band and the QPM2642 which is designed for high-band. There's also the QAT3516 Adaptive Aperture Tuner. This is the first commercially announced aperture tuner that is optimized for 600 MHz, and it can be paired with the QAT3550 antenna impedance tuner for advanced adaptive tuning capabilities. There's also the 600 MHz Duplexer B1223 and Diversity Receive Filter B8356 included here, with extensive support for 600 MHz (or Band 71) in the QPA4360, QPA4361 and QPA5461 which were already announced GaAs.
For the consumer, this doesn't mean a whole lot, other than the fact that it is going to make it easier for manufacturers like Samsung, LG and HTC to make their smartphones support the 600 MHz spectrum. Which really only matters if you are on T-Mobile's network, and if you are, you'll want to make sure your next phone that you buy supports 600 MHz or Band 71, it's something that T-Mobile will be heavily promoting in the coming year or so. T-Mobile has already been heavily promoting the LG V30 since it is the first smartphone to support 600 MHz on its network. The LG V30 does use some of these components mentioned above, however Qualcomm was not able to confirm which ones – we'll have to wait for an iFixit teardown to find out for sure. Qualcomm expects these components to be available in smartphones beginning late 2017.