Verizon and Samsung confirmed plans to release a commercial 5G smartphone into the US market in the first half of 2019.
The companies confirmed a proof of concept for the new device, which uses Qualcomm’s upcoming Snapdragon Mobile Platform, would be unveiled at a Qualcomm event in Hawaii, US this week. In a statement, the companies said the device will be “one of the first commercial 5G smartphones to market”.
Confirmation of the move follows rumours in November the pair were working on an exclusive deal. The smartphone will run on Qualcomm’s Snapdragon X50 5G NR modem and antenna modules with integrated RF transceiver, front-end and antenna elements.
Verizon said the device follows “years of collaboration” with Samsung “to deploy an end-to-end solution for commercial 5G services”.
While the Samsung unit will be Verizon’s first fully integrated 5G smartphone, the operator is also preparing to offer the Moto Z3 device, which will connect to its next generation network through a clip-on attachment dubbed the 5G Moto Mod.
It intends to switch on its commercial mobile 5G network in early 2019, having launched a fixed wireless access version in four cities in October.
Verizon’s announcement comes less than a week after domestic rival Sprint unveiled a partnership with HTC and Qualcomm covering a 5G mobile hub, which it plans to launch in the opening half of 2019.
The hub is the second 5G device announced by Sprint: in August, the operator announced it is working with LG Electronics to develop a 5G smartphone compatible with the operator’s 2.5GHz spectrum. The device is scheduled to be available in time for Sprint’s launch of 5G services in nine US cities in H1 2019.
In October AT&T revealed details of its first mobile 5G device, the Nighthawk 5G mobile hotspot, also powered by Qualcomm modems.Subscribe to our daily newsletter