At the ongoing CES 2018 trade show, Qualcomm debuted a new QCC5100 Bluetooth 5.0-based chipset aimed at truly wireless headsets. Despite the small form factor, Qualcomm says that the chipset will double the processing power, while reducing power consumption. The chipset is also designed to offer freedom and flexibility for OEMs to innovate.
The Bluetooth chipset comes with dual mode radio, low power audio and application subsystems along with built in active noise cancellation (ANC). Qualcomm said that the new chipset will not only bring down the price and size of Bluetooth headsets, but also prolong the battery life, which is the major pain point of users that prefer wireless headsets. In the press release, the chipmaker mentioned that the new SoC will reduce the power consumption by up to 65 percent.
“This breakthrough single-chip solution is designed to dramatically reduce power consumption and offers enhanced processing capabilities to help our customers build new life-enhancing, feature-rich devices. This will open new possibilities for extended-use hearable applications including virtual assistants, augmented hearing and enhanced listening,” said Anthony Murray, senior vice president and general manager, voice & music, Qualcomm Technologies International, Ltd.
Qualcomm’s new SoC also includes support for aptX and aptX HD audio technologies to offer high-quality audio streaming over Bluetooth. It also includes voice assistant services and low power wake detection, which will allow OEMs to integration of Google Assistant, Cortana or Alexa.
Bluetooth earphones running on Qualcomm’s QCC5100 chip are expected to become available by mid-year. Qualcomm also mentioned that it has already provided reference boards to manufacturers, and which ones they go ahead with remains to be seen.