With the continuous maturity of 5G chips, 5G mobile phones gradually have the conditions for commercial release. Especially in the second half of the year, mainstream mobile phone manufacturers are expected to release their own 5G commercial mobile phones.

Compared with the 4G phones you are currently using, these 5G phones have no obvious difference in appearance.

However, if you think that it is exactly the same as a 4G mobile phone, except that it is supported by multiple 5G networks, you are very wrong. In order to be able to support 5G, huge changes have actually taken place inside the phone.


First, let’s take a look at the most important component of a mobile phone-the chip. Since it is a 5G mobile phone, it must have 5G communication capabilities. The communication capability of the mobile phone is determined by the baseband chip in the main processing chip.

The baseband chip is a bit like the \”network card\” of a mobile phone. Only when the \”network card\” supports 5G, the mobile phone can use the 5G network. Currently, there are only six manufacturers capable of manufacturing 5G baseband chips: Qualcomm, Huawei, MediaTek, Samsung, Intel, and Unigroup Zhanrui.

The current mainstream 5G chips are Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 855 and Huawei’s Kirin 980. Take the Snapdragon 855 as an example. I believe everyone has heard of this chip. It adopts 7nm process technology and has a strong performance, which is 45% higher than the previous generation 845.

This baseband can support 5G full-band coverage, including both the Sub 6G frequency band (band below 6GHz) and the millimeter-wave frequency band (band above 28GHz). The ultra-high bandwidth and ultra-low latency of 5G networks can be fully utilized.

Antenna Design

As a 5G mobile phone, just changing the chip is definitely not enough. If you move your whole body, the overall design will change dramatically. The first thing to be modified is the antenna.

5G is based on Massive MIMO ,whose systems can increase the channel capacity and enhance the transmission reliability by employing multiple antennas at the transmitter and receiver.

The antenna on the base station side becomes 64 receiving and 64 transmitting, or even 128 receiving and 128 transmitting, forming an antenna array.

The number of antennas on the mobile phone side has also doubled. Traditional 4G LTE mobile phones have only 3-6 antennas, while 5G mobile phones will have 10 or more.

How to deploy these antennas in a small mobile phone space is the number one problem in 5G mobile phone design. But fortunately, the size of the 5G antenna is not large.

Some manufacturers will choose the slot antenna layout plan, the space has not

increased compared to before, but more than 10 antennas are arranged, and the structure of the antenna can be automatically adjusted as the scene changes.

 The so-called \”slot antenna\”, in simple terms, is to open a slot in the metal shell of the mobile phone to radiate and receive electromagnetic signals.

 Now everyone is very sensitive to the radiation of mobile phones, and worry that electromagnetic radiation will affect the body. Here, we will mention a concept-SAR.

What is SAR? SAR is a numerical value, \”Specific Absorption Rate\” (electromagnetic wave absorption rate). This value is mainly used to measure the impact of electronic products on the human body.

 Generally speaking, electronic products within 20 cm of the human body need to be tested for SAR. Countries also have clear requirements for SAR values. For example, the United States FCC (Federal Communications Commission) requires that the SAR value of electronic products must be below 1.6.

 Of course, mobile phones in the 5G era must also control the impact of their own electromagnetic radiation on users. To this end, smart SAR solutions will generally be adopted. In the plan, the mobile phone will flexibly control the antenna’s transmit and receive power to reduce electromagnetic radiation.

Layout of Space

 Although the antenna does not increase the space, the 5G module itself inevitably increases its volume. How to place the increased volume in a small mobile phone space without expanding the body is also a headache.

This is a bit like building blocks. You have to work hard to make a big guy into a little guy. What should you do?

 On the one hand, of course, it is to make the device miniaturized and try to use the smallest packaged device. On the other hand, it is as three-dimensional as possible. A single layer becomes multiple layers, just like a sandwich, forming a stack.

In this way, the circuit layout design of the mobile phone can be made smaller and more compact, and the space occupied can be reduced. 5G mobile phones will adopt this design idea to reduce their own overall size and thickness.

Power Consumption and Heat Dissipation

 Look at power consumption and heat dissipation.

While new mobile phones and new chips bring performance growth, they also often bring substantial increases in power consumption and heat generation. If the power consumption is not well controlled, it will greatly affect the battery life of the mobile phone, and the huge heat generation will also cause the mobile phone to freeze.

Let’s take a look at the thermal design ideas of Axon 10 Pro, which can be divided into two directions: hardware and software.

For the hardware direction, a powerful liquid-cooled copper tube is used inside the mobile phone, which has a thermal power processing capability of >5W, ensuring that the temperature difference between the hot and cold ends is \u003C5°C, and can quickly transfer the temperature of the processor to the cold end. Ensure that the processor fully exerts its performance.

At the same time, Axon10 Pro also uses a composite material of phase change heat dissipation material + heat dissipation shielding material, which has strong shielding and heat dissipation capabilities, ensuring the heat dissipation effect.

In the software direction, Axon 10 Pro uses the AI ​​CPU management mechanism to find the perfect balance between performance and power consumption through the establishment of algorithm models and artificial intelligence capabilities. In short, it is both soft and hard.

Other manufacturers’ heat dissipation ideas should be roughly the same.

Storage Speed

Finally, I want to mention the storage speed of mobile phones.

Many people ask, the 5G network speed is so fast, can the storage speed of the mobile phone itself keep up? Will it become a bottleneck? Actually not!

Take Axon 10 Pro as an example. It uses the F2FS file system. Compared with the traditional EXT4 format file system, the random read and write rate is increased by more than 15%. Special processing is made for the read and write speed of 4K small files. The overall storage performance is improved by more than 20%.

It uses Sandisk iNAND 8521 flash memory chip. The chip uses Sandisk iNAND 8521 and 64-layer 3D NAND stacking technology. Compared with the previous generation product, the continuous write performance is increased by 2 times, 4K random write is increased by 10 times, and it can provide 792MB/s sequential read and 486MB/s sequential Write speed (currently, the UFS 2.1 flash memory on most mobile phones has a continuous write capacity between 200-250MB/s).

If you download movies, the sequential write speed of 486 MB/s flash memory corresponds to the network speed of 3888Mbit/s, which can fully meet the current demand of 1000-2000Mbit/s for 5G.

Concluding Remarks

In summary, there are many differences between 5G mobile phones and traditional 4G LTE mobile phones. These differences are not shown in appearance, but in internal hardware configuration and overall architecture design. It is impossible to make qualified 5G mobile phones by relying only on hardware stockpiling.

In addition to the above, various manufacturers will also focus on the level of smart hardware. For example, smart watches that are very hot this year will be a major trend. Almost all mobile phone manufacturers will launch their own brand smart watches. Of smart watch manufacturers will face tremendous competitive pressure.

What trends do you think there will be smartphones in 2021? Let’s embrace the new tech revolution for smartphones in 2021.

Tags : 5G phonesembrace the new tech revolutionPhone Technology Revolution

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