Tue, May 28, 2019 - Page 12 News List

Qualcomm, Lenovo unveil 5G-capable laptop

By Lisa Wang and Natasha Li  /  Staff reporters

Qualcomm Inc and China’s Lenovo Group Ltd (聯想) yesterday unveiled the world’s first 5G-capable laptop powered by the US chipmaker’s processors on the eve of the annual Computex Taipei.

Named “Project Limitless,” the Lenovo laptop is equipped with the Qualcomm Snapdragon 8cx 5G compute platform, the world’s first 7-nanometer platform for PCs that offers 5G connectivity.

The laptop is scheduled to enter the global market later this year, Lenovo said.

Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co (台積電) helped manufacture the 5G processor, Qualcomm said.

The US company joined the laptop processor segment three years ago, it said.

With a healthier 5G ecosystem in place, Qualcomm expects 5G technology’s rollout to happen much faster than the transition from 3G to 4G, Alex Katouzian, senior vice president and general manger of Qualcomm’s mobile and compute business unit, told a media briefing.

“We feel the momentum is growing,” Katouzian said.

This year, more than 20 telecom operators worldwide are set to launch 5G services, while 20 original equipment manufacturers (OEM) are ready with 5G devices, he said.

That is a seven-fold increase from only four telecom operators and three OEMs during the first year of 4G rollout, he added.

More 5G-capable laptops from other OEMs are in the pipeline for launch by the end of this year, Katouzian said.

Asustek Computer Inc (華碩) and HTC Corp (宏達電) are among the OEMs, Qualcomm’s presentation document showed.

Separately, Quanta Cloud Technology (QCT, 雲達科技), a data center solutions provider and subsidiary of Quanta Computer Inc (廣達電腦), yesterday said that it has developed a fully virtualized 5G mobile network in collaboration with Intel Corp, Rakuten Inc and Red Hat Inc, as it prepares to showcase 5G infrastructure at the Computex.

Quanta Cloud president Mike Yang (楊騏令) said the company has over the past two years expanded its portfolio from data centers to edge computing products, which would allow customers to quickly adopt 5G technology.

Yang said 5G technology is still evolving within an ecosystem that has yet to be completed, adding that the company has approached a few telecoms and business outlook is expected an upturn by next year.

Caroline Chan (林怡顏), vice president of Intel’s data center group said that a complete ecosystem is necessary to quicken 5G technology’s deployment and bring cloud-computing technology to the Internet.

While 3G and 4G technologies were designed to serve consumers, “5G is different, as it is designed for enterprises,” she said.

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