Bluetooth has long been maligned for its lack of audio quality — when you’re using a low-power connection like that, a lot of compression is necessary to get the music to your buds, and a lot of detail gets lost. Things might have just turned around for Bluetooth thanks to the Qualcomm S5 and S3 sound platforms, both of which promise to allow lossless audio over a Bluetooth connection.
Devices running on Qualcomm’s latest platforms will be able to transmit 16-bit 44kHz CD-quality lossless audio over Bluetooth, in addition to 24-bit 96kHz high-resolution audio. Basically, once your favorite audiophile headphone brand gets on board, you won’t need to insist on a wired connection to enjoy music the way it’s meant to be enjoyed. And, that means that after many, many years, we can finally stop talking about phones that no longer have headphone ports.
Improved music quality isn’t the only thing to get excited about. The two platforms allow for 32kHz super wideband audio voice calling, and with gaming mode, latency — the other great Bluetooth complaint — will be cut down significantly, as users will be able to enjoy 68ms low latency audio and voice backchannel for in-game communication.
The Qualcomm S5 and Qualcomm S3 sound platforms also offer third-generation adaptive active noise cancellation. Recording stereo voice is also now possible.
While there still may be some time before we see devices on the market using these platforms, executives of Jabra, Mi Smartphone, vivo, and more have already expressed interest in including the tech in future devices.