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February 15, 2014 / Raffy Pekson II

Qualcomm 2013 Year-End Review and 2014-Beyond

I actually started using QualComm in 2002 when they were selling cell phone handsets in the U.S. You could get a QualComm handset from the retail stores like Target and Wal-Mart preloaded with call credits. It was great for transient visitors like me during that time when I was working for a U.S. Tier-2 telecom company with its NOC and call centers in Florida, U.S. Virgin Islands and Guyana in South America. In fact, it even bought the Guyana call center later on. I think I had about three QualComm handsets during my two year stint in the U.S. It’s been a while till I encountered QualComm setting up a call center in the Philippines and moving into the mobile and computing chip and technology market where it is today.

Historically, QualComm began in the CDMA market, the predominant early entry mobile phone technology in the U.S. They came up with its 3G version and is today the leading patent holder in 3G mobile technologies.

Qualcomm Philippines Senior Director for Business Development Mantosh Malhotra and Qualcomm South East Asia and The Pacific Public Relations Adrian Fu presided over today’s small group media briefing, presenting a year-end review of QualComm’s technologies in 2013 and focusing on the LTE market as a continuing driver and engager to the consumer’s need for better and faster smartphone usage.

The compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) for smartphone unit shipments globally is expected to increase consistently at 20% between 2012 and 2017, with seven billion smartphone unit shipments forecast between 2013 and 2017. In the Philippines, 2012’s 3.3 million WCDMA/LTE handset shipments increased to a whooping 5.8 million in 2013 of the same quarter, and is forecasted to hit 15 million by 2017.

With these growing statistics in mind, Qualcomm is bent on focusing at the growth opportunities, mainly:

  • Continue to drive smartphone growth through innovation;
  • Facilitate data growth;
  • Develop adjacent opportunities; and
  • Create a digital sixth sense.

Drive Smartphone Growth and Innovation. Through the years, Qualcomm has built a technology leadership by continued innovation in fields of display processing, Wi-Fi, USB, ISP, CPU, memory, sensor processing, DSP, Bluetooth, and multimedia processing; not to mention its involvement in its proprietary semiconductor core Adreno GPU (graphics processing unit) that integrate into Snapdragon chipsets.

Speaking of Snapdragon, the new Qualcomm Snapdragon 805 is the first ultra HD display and UI, the first ultra HD gaming with Adreno 420 GPU, the first ultra HD HEVC (h.265) hardware video recorder, the first Gigapixel per second camera ISP, and the first 2×64-bit POP memory for fast, seamless multitasking. The 805 gives new mobile devices a higher peak performance with half the power consumed as compared to competition especially essential with high graphics use. The 805 now delivers video at lower bitrate, the first to implement hardware based HEVC (h.265) decode which lowers power and bandwidth consumption by 75 percent and 50 percent, respectively. This enables carriers to deliver content more efficiently and provides better battery life for consumers.

Facilitate Network Evolution. More spectrum in low and higher bands, more small cells everywhere, and more ad-hoc small cells and inside-out deployment provides a 1,000-times higher efficiency. LTE broadcast becomes flexible and there is better use of the spectrum.

Develop Adjacent Opportunities. Qualcomm is extending technology in adjacent device opportunities, such as:

  • Small cells;
  • CE devices;
  • Health devices;
  • Smart grid;
  • Wearables;
  • Tablets;
  • Hybrids;
  • Home gateways;
  • Cars;
  • TVs.

The Internet. It is forecasted that there will be 25 billion connected devices by 2020. Grasping that estimate, Qualcomm is applying mobile technologies to everything, make these more aware, connected, intelligent and interactive. From household machines, cars and multimedia devices, to people, objects and places.

The Digital 6th Sense. The augmentation of human ability becomes important in the near future. People need to know their location and the location of people and objects. There is technology to sense a user’s motion and see the user’s environment, including hearing the user’s surroundings. Devices – input and output devices, sensors, auxiliary processing, and wireless power – must communicate with and tap into nearby resources.

Qualcomm Incorporated is an American global semiconductor company that designs, manufactures and markets digital wireless telecommunications products and services. Headquartered in San Diego, CA, USA, the company has 157 worldwide locations. The parent company is Qualcomm Incorporated (Qualcomm), which includes the Qualcomm Technology Licensing Division (QTL). Qualcomm’s wholly owned subsidiary, Qualcomm Technologies, Inc. (QTI), operates substantially all of Qualcomm’s R&D activities, as well as its product and services businesses, including its semiconductor business, Qualcomm CDMA Technologies.

Photo by @raffypekson. Images by Qualcomm.

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