Qualcomm Launching Snapdragon Satellite: What Investors Should Know About New Product

Zinger Key Points
  • Qualcomm announces the launch of Snapdragon Satellite.
  • The new offering will begin working with smartphones and could expand to other products.

Leading technology company Qualcomm Inc QCOM announced the launch of a new product at CES 2023 Thursday. Here are the details on Snapdragon Satellite.

What Happened: Qualcomm has shown off several new products and partnerships at CES 2023, held this week in Las Vegas.

On Thursday, the company announced an agreement with satellite company Iridium Communications IRDM to launch Snapdragon Satellite.

The company called the new product “the world’s first satellite-based solution capable of supporting two-way messaging for premium smartphones and beyond.”

The agreement will see Qualcomm and Iridium bring satellite-based connectivity to next-gen Android smartphones in North America and Europe.

The product, which is expected to launch in the second half of 2023, can support two-way messaging for emergency use, SMS texting and other messaging applications, including in rural and offshore locations.

Qualcomm said the satellite was “designed to keep you connected when most needed.”

The product is based on the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 mobile platform from Qualcomm and powered by the Snapdragon 5G modern-RF systems.

“Robust and reliable connectivity is at the heart of premium experiences. Snapdragon Satellite showcases our history of leadership in enabling global satellite communications and our ability to bring superior innovations to mobile devices at scale,” Qualcomm Senior Vice President Durga Malladi said.

Iridium said it was proud to partner with Qualcomm on Snapdragon Satellite.

“Our Network is tailored for this service — our advanced, LEO satellites cover every part of the globe and support the lower-power, low-latency connections ideal for the satellite-powered services enabled by the industry-leading Snapdragon Satellite,” Iridium CEO Matt Desch said.
Garmin Ltd. GRMN will collaborate with Qualcomm for emergency messaging.

“Garmin welcomes the opportunity to expand our proven satellite emergency response services to millions of new smartphone users globally,” Garmin Vice President of Outdoor Segment Brad Trenkle said.

Related Link: Exclusive: Qualcomm Extension With Samsung Offers New Revenue Opportunities, Cloud Growth 

Why It’s Important: Qualcomm will enable OEMS and service providers to offer “truly global coverage” with satellite connectivity.

The agreement with Iridium connects to an already existing base of low-Earth orbit satellites.

“This new addition to our Snapdragon platform strongly positions us to enable satellite communication capabilities and service offerings across multiple device categories,” Malladi said.

Qualcomm said beyond smartphones, Snapdragon Satellite could be expanded to other devices in the future, including laptops, tablets, vehicles and Internet of Things.

Apple Inc AAPL announced plans for satellite messaging emergency services in September 2022 for the iPhone 14. The announcement included a partnership with Globalstar GSAT for its satellite network.

Apple’s iPhone 14 models are said to have a Qualcomm chip that can talk to satellites, according to a report.

Watch Benzinga's interview with Qualcomm CEO Cristiano Amon below: 


Photo courtesy of Qualcomm

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