CES 2017 kicks off with a focus on 5G

CES 2017 kicks off with a focus on 5G [Image: hh5800 via iStock]

The Consumer Electronics Show (CES) 2017 has kicked off in Las Vegas, with technology firms displaying their latest innovations.

There has been a particular focus on the development of 5G, with Intel revealing that it would launch a modem chip for 5G smartphones.

Intel claimed it would be the the world’s first global 5G modem that supports both sub-6GHz bands and mmWave spectrum. The company said: “It includes a compact, low-power chip kit and delivers gigabit speeds and ultra-low latency, enabling self-driving cars to make split-second decisions, and transforming connectivity required for other applications, such as smart cities, drones and virtual reality applications.”

“The pace of technology improvement is accelerating faster than ever,” said Intel chief executive Brian Krzanich at a news conference at the event.

He went on to say: “Technology is extending far beyond consumer electronics, defining almost every aspect of our lives, and transforming industries.”

It is unlikely to be available for smartphones until 2018. It comes after a 2016 announcement by rival Qualcomm that it would produce a 5G modem, which would operate on the mmWave spectrum.

Qualcomm has also announced this week that it would be partnering with Ericsson and US mobile network AT&T to conduct interoperability testing and over-the-air field trials based on the expected 5G New Radio (NR) specifications being developed by the 3rd Generation Partnership Project (3GPP), which will form the basis of the global standards.

Ulf Ewaldsson, senior vice president and chief technology officer at Ericsson, explained: "5G is the greatest opportunity our industry has ever experienced. It will provide a platform for operators to address new markets, such as media, transportation and manufacturing.”

At CES 2017, Intel also introduced Intel GO, a new automotive brand that include the industry’s first 5G-ready development platform. It is intended to allow vehicle manufacturers to prepare and develop solutions ahead of the expected 5G network rollout.