Qualcomm should be happy about that: Apple apparently has to continue to purchase 5G modems from the manufacturer. A separate chip should probably not be ready in time.
Apple will probably keep Qualcomm in 2023 as a major customer for 5G modems. Apple’s efforts to introduce its own modem chip with the iPhone 15 next year have probably failed, analyst Ming-Chi Kuo said on Twitter. Kuo maintains good contacts in the supplier industry in Asia. Apple took over Intel’s modem division in 2019 to develop its own chips.
The news comes as a surprise, as Qualcomm managers had already warned investors that 80 percent of business activities with Apple will be completed in 2023 could be omitted. However, industry insiders still believe it is possible that Apple could make its first attempts with its own modem chip in 2023, at least for a device with lower sales figures – such as an iPad. The iPhone is a major challenge simply because of the large quantities.
Work in progress for five years
Apple’s efforts to create a modem chip are primarily about additional performance and energy efficiency. In addition, with the volume of chips required, the margins for the iPhone should also increase if Apple takes over the development itself. Supposedly, the modem has been under development for five years. Subsidiaries in Germany probably also played a significant role in the development.
In addition, Apple and Qualcomm had clashed in court in a dispute over patents and payments. In the end, however, they came to an agreement, especially since Apple had had no luck with the use of Intel modem chips and user reports repeatedly complained about disconnections.
There’s still time until 2027
Apple is said to currently have a license agreement with Qualcomm for a period of six years, which can be extended by two years. This was closed in 2019. This means that there would still be time to complete your own solution for modem chips by 2027.