Qualcomm took to the latest iteration of the annual The Small Cells World Summit to unveil its newest wireless advancement, having announced an unprecedentedly versatile 5G New Radio solution earlier today. Called the FSM100xx, the device comes in the form of a small cell that the company says is the first such offering to be compatible with both millimeter-wave and sub-6GHz spectrum while also shipping with support for the latest wireless connectivity standard. Much like its name implies, the system is effectively a significantly upgraded version of the older FSM Platform Qualcomm created to support 3G and 4G deployment.
The FSM100xx series promises to cut product research and development costs of original equipment manufacturers by allowing them to reuse designs across the sub-6GHz and mmWave spectrum, consequently also saving development time. Despite a high degree of flexibility, the 5G NR-compliance ensures that Qualcomm's latest system can offer significantly improved bandwidth, coverage, and latency compared to previous-generation alternatives. While the 5G standard is still in the process of being finalized, its first implementable specification has already been agreed upon last December, prompting numerous experimental buildouts in all parts of the world. Qualcomm is now looking to further support those R&D advancements by standardizing one of the most important parts of the 5G equation – small cells. Regardless of the type of spectrum they plan to leverage to enable the new generation of wireless connectivity, mobile service providers will be able to rely on Qualcomm's FSM100xx lineup in the process of doing so.
With MIMO and power-over-ethernet support, as well as a multi-gigabit throughput being part of the package, the newly announced system is suitable for both indoor and outdoor employment, the San Diego, California-based chipmaker claims. The device ships with a software-customizable modem meant to help OEMs stay up to date with future 3GPP-determined 5G standards without physically modifying their previously bought hardware or investing in any new infrastructure. Qualcomm's latest small cells will become available for sampling next year, with some of the company's larger clients already joining its invite-only early access program.