Qualcomm announces Wi-Fi 6 for automotive, bringing greater capacity for premium in-vehicle experiences

Feb 25, 2019 | BARCELONA

Qualcomm Technologies, Inc., a subsidiary of Qualcomm Incorporated (NASDAQ: QCOM), today introduced the new Qualcomm® Automotive Wi-Fi 6 chip, the QCA6696, bringing the next generation of Wi-Fi and Bluetooth® connectivity to the automotive industry. Complementing the Qualcomm® Snapdragon™ Automotive 4G and 5G Platforms, the QCA6696 is Qualcomm Technologies’ most advanced Wi-Fi solution designed to offer fast, secure and efficient Wi-Fi connectivity, to meet consumer demands for greater robustness and reduced latency when operating in congested and dense environments. The QCA6696 features dual Wi-Fi 6 multiple-input multiple output (MIMO) access points designed to support Gigabit in-car hotspot and to deliver efficient Wi-Fi connectivity throughout the vehicle, supporting ultra-high definition (ultra-HD) video streaming on multiple displays, screen mirroring from compatible devices and wireless back-up cameras, as well as Bluetooth 5.1 support and Qualcomm® aptX™ Adaptive audio to deliver high fidelity voice and streaming audio support. The QCA6696 chip also features full MIMO client capability designed to extend range at high data rates for connecting to external access points for automotive services, such as vehicle diagnostics, software updates and automatic check-ins when pulling up to dealerships.

"Qualcomm Technologies has a track-record of excellence in Wi-Fi, bringing our expertise to deliver solutions like the QCA6696 to support improved connectivity and enhanced in-vehicle experiences,” said Nakul Duggal, senior vice president of product management, Qualcomm Technologies. “As vehicle connectivity continues to advance from 4G to 5G, Wi-Fi 6 is an integral part of the connectivity evolution, as it enables seamless connections, across multiple devices, and in congested environments. The QCA6696 builds on our leadership in the automotive industry, proving yet again how we are in an unparalleled position to meet the demands of the industry.”

Key QCA6696 features include:

  • Increased user throughput in crowded networks, designed to reach rates of nearly 1.8 Gbps, featuring Dual-Band Simultaneous (DBS) and Higher Order Modulation (1024 QAM) in both 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz bands
  • 8-Stream Sounding , designed to allow connected vehicles to leverage the growing base of 8x8 MU-MIMO Wi-Fi 6 access points being commercially deployed and benefit from faster throughput and longer range, for car-to-Cloud connections and automotive dealer services
  • Improved security utilizing WPA3, the latest Wi-Fi security protocol, to support WPA-3-Personal, WPA3-Enterprise, WPA3-Enhanced Open, WPA3-Easy Connect
  • Intelligent interference handling using BSS Color designed to allow the vehicle-to-device connection to be more resilient to outside interference
  • Target Wakeup Time (TWT) to facilitate in-vehicle phones to use up to 33% lower power when streaming or using Wi-Fi calling

Qualcomm® Bluetooth 5.1:

  • aptX-Adaptive audio for ultra-HD quality voice and low latency audio, ideal for enhanced in-vehicle experiences

The QCA6696 is now sampling and is expected to appear in commercial vehicles in 2021. It is also included as a part of Qualcomm Technologies’ 2nd generation Qualcomm® Connected Car Reference Design (CCRD), which also features the Snapdragon Automotive 4G or 5G Platform with integrated RF Front-End (RFFE) solutions, C-V2X and HP-GNSS support, as well as a Qualcomm Technologies application processor and Qualcomm® Vision Enhanced Precise Positioning (VEPP). As a comprehensive telematics/V2X reference design, automakers and Tier-1 suppliers can develop on the 2nd generation CCRD for rapid prototyping for accelerating their time to commercialization.

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