Tech Crunch reports that Samsung has announced plans to release a phone with 5G capabilities in 2019. Partnered with Qualcomm, who developed the Snapdragon X50 5G NR modem and antenna modules via the Snapdragon Mobile Platform for the phone, they are hoping to work with both Verizon and AT&T to release the phone in the first half of the year.
This is not Samsung’s first crack at 5G technology. In 2017, they previewed their 5G home router at the Mobile World Congress 2017. OnePlus and Motorola have also promised to distribute 5G devices by 2019 as well, while Samsung’s biggest competitor, Apple, has no plans to develop 5G technology until 2020.
In addition to its use of 5G, the phone is unique in its design. The prototype, demoed at the Qualcomm’s Snapdragon Summit in Hawaii in early December, employs a notch in the top right-hand corner. This will be the first smartphone to have a notch cut out of the corner.
This design may not be used final Samsung 5G device, the Galaxy S10, according to Tech Radar. “You should think of that device as a sample device,” said Justin Denison, senior vice president of mobile product marketing at Samsung. “Not necessarily indicative of what the final device will look like, its size, shape, or even the UI treatment.”
The odd design has stirred up a bit of controversy in the tech world, but Samsung wants the focus to be on the faster 5G speeds. The prototype device was able to stream a 30Mbps, 4K video from the internet at 60 frames per second while using 5G, according to PC Mag. LTE network capabilities typically throttle video streaming down to 480p.
“The phone can now be a hub for high quality video content,” said Samsung’s Suzanne da Silva said. “One of the biggest things consumers are looking for is that HQ stream.”