Qualcomm’s third annual Snapdragon Technology Summit is happening in Maui today, and it promises to be the first — and last — major public debut of blazing-fast 5G before the new cellular standard launches in the US for real. And while inviting 330 people to a tropical island setting might seem frivolous, there’s some serious money and technology at stake.
You see, AT&T is promising to launch real 5G NR cellular in 12 cities by the end of 2018, mere weeks from today. But despite that fact — and a variety of promises, milestones, and one-off demonstrations from other carriers which plan to launch as soon as early 2019 — we still don’t have a clear idea of what 5G will actually offer right away. Few journalists have even so much as touched a 5G device.