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Intel is leading the charge to transform the network, extend edge computing and unleash new usages to deliver on the promise of 5G. MediaTek is developing the 5G modem and working with partners to manufacture the solution. "Our 5G modem for PCs, developed in partnership with Intel, is integral to making 5G accessible and available across home and mobile platforms," said MediaTek President Joe Chen. MediaTek's new 5G modem for PCs is based in part on its Helio M70 5G modem it introduced earlier this year as part of its integrated 5G system-on-chip for the first wave of 5G flagship smartphones.
Intel has announced it will be partnering with Taiwanese semiconductor company MediaTek to develop 5G modems for laptops, with plans to deliver the first products by early 2021. Dell and HP are expected to be among the first OEMs to deliver laptops enabled with Intel and MediaTek’s 5G solution. Intel said at the time that it expects the first devices using Project Athena to launch during the second half of 2019, with its innovation partners on the project including Dell, Google, HP, Samsung, Microsoft, Acer, Asus, Lenovo, and Innolux.
Intel said the decision to scrap its 5G phone modem business was because there was "no clear path to profitability and positive returns". Including 5G and artificial intelligence, Project Athena creates a path forward to accelerate laptop innovation, Intel said at CES.
5G is not only important because it has the potential to support millions of devices at ultrafast speeds, but also because it has the potential to transform the lives of people around the world. Improvements in 5G technology can help make life better.
Improving safety, health, and security
Access to 5G technology promises to improve mission-critical services that affect safety and security of services today.5G will be the most significant network transformation in history. It represents the convergence of computing and communications, and it will open the door for new PC experiences and the way we connect with the world around us.
Improvements in 5G technology can help make life better. For example, significant advances in autonomous vehicle technology are possible with 5G, creating the potential for people to have new levels of personal and professional freedom. Intel is the volume leader in both wireless and cellular-connected PCs today with its Intel Wi-Fi 6 (Gig+) and LTE solutions optimized across consumer and commercial segments the data-centric era, including its Project Athena innovation program
Extending the reach of mobile broadband
5G can power technology well beyond what current mobile technology permits.
- As a first step in the partnership, Intel will define a 5G solution specification focused on deployment in key laptop segments, and MediaTek will be responsible for the development and manufacturing of the 5G modem.
- In addition, the two companies said they are working with Fibocom to develop M.2 modules that will see the module vendor provide operator certification and regulatory support, as well as manufacturer and distribute the 5G M.2 modules.
- Intel will also develop and validate platform-level hardware and software integration, including OS host drivers.
"With this partnership, consumers will be able to browse, stream and game faster on their PCs, but we also expect them to innovate with 5G in ways we have not yet imagined," Chen said. Through this partnership, Intel has been working with MediaTek on the 5G solution for deployment in key consumer and commercial laptop segments. Intel will also provide optimization and validation across the platform and lend system integration and co-engineering support to further enable its OEM partners.