As we approach 5G connectivity, our smartphone experience is about to get much faster, starting with the ZTE Gigabit Phone.
ZTE has quite a few smartphones lined up for Mobile World Congress this year. ZTE has pre-announced what may be its next flagship device a little early: the ZTE Gigabit Phone. The device is described as “forward-looking,” meaning it incorporates technology that we expect to define the future. While we may immediately think of bezel-less screens and artificial intelligence, ZTE’s headed in another direction with the Gigabit Phone: High-speed data connectivity.
The phone is said to be capable of downloading data at speeds of 1Gbps This, says ZTE, opens up the world of streaming VR video, instant access to files stored in the cloud, and hi-res music streaming to owners of the phone. It all sounds very exciting. After all, who doesn’t want speeds more regularly associated with home broadband internet connections on their phone?
However, ZTE isn’t saying anything about how these speeds will be achieved, or where they will be achieved. that discussion will begin once the device is announced.
For example, ZTE’s phone may be the first smartphone announced to use Qualcomm’s X16 LTE modem, which itself is the first “Gigabit Class LTE modem,” and has a peak download speed of 1Gbps. The modem has already been used in a Netgear router, launched with Ericsson and Telstra in Australia. In smartphones, it comes packaged with the new Snapdragon 835 processor, which is expected to be a main feature of the Samsung Galaxy S8. Will ZTE somehow announce a Snapdragon 835 phone before Samsung? Maybe.
What about networks? Various carriers around the world, including Telstra, Singtel, Swisscom, and EE, have all been running 1Gbps trials and real-world tests over the past year. In the U.S., T-Mobile has been doing the same, and at the end of 2016 released a video demonstrating the technology on an unreleased prototype phone. Could that be ZTE’s Gigabit Phone? ZTE and T-Mobile have worked together for some time, so another mutually beneficial partnership may make the most sense.
Gigabit mobile connectivity speeds are being viewed as a crucial early step towards 5G, which is still many years away from wide public use. ZTE’s Gigabit Phone, and the networks supporting it, will give us a taste of what it’ll feel like to have Google Fiber-like speeds on the move. Or as so hypothesized.
unfortunately there is no further information regarding specifications or even what the Gigabit Phone will look like. You’ll have to wait until the official unveiling in Barcelona, Spain, at the end of February. Things are kept topsecret here. ;-)
Other ZTE offerings?
The Gigabit Phone won’t be the only new smartphone unveiled by ZTE, though, as the company said there will be more additions to its Blade series.
We will likely learn more about ZTE’s Hawkeye project as well, which looked to crowd-source ideas for a smartphone and fund it via Kickstarter. The project has hit a few roadblocks but it is still being developed. .
Rumors suggest that the company is building an Android Wear smartwatch with LTE connectivity, The ZTE Quartz. It’s rumored to arrive later this year.
Pretty exciting news.
What are your thoughts?