At the beginning of 2018, internal plans for Meizu’s 5G hit the road. At the time, the SA standard was technically unavailable thus Meizu’s original 5G mobile phone plan uses NSA networking. In June 2018, with the 3GPP freezing 5G SA standard, Meizu abandoned the NSA project and turned to SA. Meizu hopes to start 5G signal testing in Q3 2020 and trial production of 5G terminals in Q4 2020. Meizu’s maiden 5G product should arrive in Q2 2020.
To give 5G capabilities to mobile phones, the 5G communication baseband is a prerequisite. Currently, there are four 5G chips in the market. These include Qualcomm X50, Kirin Balong 5000, Samsung Exynos 5100, and MediaTek Helio M70. Among these, Balong 5000 is not for sale, Exynos has not yet opened up with operators, Helio M70 has not yet officially shipped (though it is available to many mobile phone manufacturers including Meizu), and Qualcomm X50 actually only supports NSA. Due to the special 5G evolution route in China, the window period of the NSA is actually only the last few months of the second half of this year. Therefore, even if Meizu launches the 5G mobile phone this year, the revenue will be very limited.