Broadcom's Wireless Chipset Powers the World’s First Wi-Fi 6E Smartphone

Broadcom announced that the BCM4389 chip is being used by the world’s first Wi-Fi 6E enabled phone, the Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra. The BCM4389 combines the benefits of the sixth generation of Wi-Fi with the pristine 6 GHz band to power the Galaxy S21 Ultra with Wi-Fi speeds over 2 Gbps. The chip also has a unique multi-radio Bluetooth 5 architecture that supports a premium audio experience with Samsung Galaxy Buds Pro, and Tri-Band Simultaneous (TBS) connectivity that improves Wi-Fi and Bluetooth performance and battery utilization.  

Wi-Fi 6E, the latest generation of Wi-Fi, delivers multi-gigabit speeds and millisecond latencies by operating in the 6 GHz band. Countries, including the United States and South Korea, have tripled the available Wi-Fi spectrum by opening up 1.2 GHz of spectrum in the 6 GHz band for unlicensed use. This expansion creates seven additional 160 MHz channels for the BCM4389, unlocking the value of Wi-Fi 6E for remote work, education, telemedicine, and gaming.

The BCM4389 is a Wi-Fi 6E / Bluetooth 5 combo chip for smartphones. Key features include:

  • Seven Wi-Fi and Bluetooth radios.
  • Support for 2 streams of Wi-Fi 6E.
  • Multi-Radio Bluetooth 5 with antenna beamforming.
  • Tri-Band Simultaneous (TBS) architecture including a dedicated background scan radio for Wi-Fi and Bluetooth.
  • Simultaneous dual-band operation.
  • 2.63 Gbps PHY rate.
  • Operation in 2.4 GHz and 5.1-7.125 GHz unlicensed bands.
  • 160 MHz channel bandwidth.
  • 1024-QAM modulation.
  • OFDMA.
  • MU-MIMO.

The BCM4389 and Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra bring additional benefits to consumers worldwide. The chip delivers multi-gigabit Wi-Fi 6 performance in the existing 5 GHz band with 160 MHz capabilities. It also builds on the success of Broadcom’s Wi-Fi 6 solutions and instantly benefits from the ecosystem of 400 million Wi-Fi 6 Broadcom-enabled phones, PC, tablets, routers, enterprise access points, and carrier gateways around the world. 

The BCM4389 was the world’s first Wi-Fi chip authorized by the FCC to operate in the 6 GHz band. It is also in the first wave of devices certified by the Wi-Fi Alliance for Wi-Fi 6E operation. In addition to Wi-Fi 6E, Broadcom BCM4389’s TBS connectivity architecture brings better Wi-Fi QoS, more precise indoor location accuracy, and five times better battery utilization compared to current flagship connectivity solutions. Its multi-radio Bluetooth 5 architecture creates robust links to audio headsets even in heavily congested locations like subway stations. 

The joint dedication to a market-leading technology has evolved to now include Wi-Fi 6E on the Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra and enables an unrivaled connectivity experience for Galaxy users to share and consume content with confidence.

Back in 2019, their partnership in launching Wi-Fi 6 in Samsung Galaxy S10 kick-started a technology transition that has resulted in around half-a-billion Wi-Fi 6 devices in the world. Today, this partnership has made the Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra a showcase for the immersive possibilities with Wi-Fi 6E, and a harbinger for the technological disruptions that await us with Wi-Fi in the 6 GHz band.

As the 6 GHz band continues to open up in countries across the world and as the 5 GHz band becomes increasingly crowded in many areas, the time to include Wi-Fi 6E in devices is now. Smartphones are both high data-rate and relatively ubiquitous devices that generally rely on Wi-Fi connectivity indoors, and their shift to using the 6 GHz band will have a substantial impact on the performance of those devices and the networks they are on.

Wi-Fi Alliance members have mobilized around Wi-Fi 6E by recognizing the tremendous latency and performance benefits devices can deliver to Wi-Fi users. Broadcom’s chipset, among the first Wi-Fi 6E certified devices in interoperability testbed, that powers Samsung’s Wi-Fi 6E smartphone demonstrates the industry’s rapid momentum to deliver Wi-Fi 6E benefits securely and reliably to Wi-Fi users.

Click here to learn more about BCM4389.

Click here to learn more about Wi-Fi 6E.

Broadcom

  • Country: United States
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