Former Qualcomm CEO Is Launching A Startup To Compete In The Race To 5G

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Eric Lieberman Managing Editor
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The former CEO of Qualcomm, Paul Jacobs, is set to launch his own startup that aims to bring the next generation of wireless technology — known as 5G — into fruition, according to a Wall Street Journal report published Thursday.

Jacobs is trying to create what seems to be a competitor, while also working to purchase his former company, meaning the startup could be a future partner entity or supplementary asset. He was essentially ousted from the board of Qualcomm, a U.S. tech giant that creates computer chips and other telecommunications equipment, because, for the most part, he expressed his intention to make the company private, reported TheWSJ.

Qualcomm is highly critical for the development and implementation of 5G as advanced semiconductors and telecom technology in general is needed for the technical infrastructure, and there isn’t an abundance of such manufacturers in the U.S. America is arguably in a race with China to be the first to lay out usable 5G wireless networks, as the proverbial winner will reap the benefits that come with decreased computing latency and increased broadband bandwidth, like the litany of possibilities under what’s known as the Internet of Things (IoT). (RELATED: The Race To 5G Technology: How America Could Lose Out On The Next Biggest Thing)

Other attempts at making 5G — which have varying, but much higher standards than previous generations — a reality as soon as possible are usually welcomed, as competition is often a great motivator of progress.

“We think the U.S. needs more investment in communications technology,” Jacobs said, according to TheWSJ. “We think we’re well positioned to do it.”

How much an embryonic startup, known as XCOM, will help at this point is debatable, as is Jacobs’s ability to take over such a corporate behemoth.

“If we’re successful acquiring Qualcomm,” Jacobs said, “the two things could come together down the road.”

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Eric Lieberman