Apple has hired a former Qualcomm Engineering VP to act as the project lead on its wireless “System on a Chip” (SoC) project, hinting that it may be planning to develop its own cellular modems.
The hiring of Esin Terzioglu, who joined Qualcomm back in 2009, comes at a time when Apple is locked in a legal battle with the company.
“After an amazing ~8 years at Qualcomm, it is time for me to move on to my next adventure,” Terzioglu wrote on LinkedIn. “It has been my honor and privilege to have worked with so many talented and dedicated individuals at Qualcomm where we accomplished great feats as a team (10nm bring up was a doozy and the team did an amazing job bringing the first product to market!!!). I feel privileged for the opportunity to continue my career at Apple.”
The relationship between Apple and Qualcomm — which produces the wireless chips used in various Apple devices — soured earlier this year after Apple filed a $1 billion lawsuit against the chipmaker.
Apple claimed that Qualcomm has been charging charging royalties on technology it does not own, while Qualcomm has hit back with a lawsuit of its own, arguing that Apple is being misleading and has breached its contract. Qualcomm reportedly plans to try and force Apple’s hand by seeking a ban on Apple importing iPhones into the United States.
There has also been a squabble between Qualcomm and four of Apple’s suppliers, after Apple allegedly pressured them to withhold royalty payments to Qualcomm.
While hiring a senior Qualcomm employee certainly appears incendiary at this time, Apple’s been reportedly bringing more and more of its chip production work in-house for some time now. This “insourcing” has so far affected Apple GPU maker Imagination Technologies and power-management chip company Dialog Semiconductor.
Bringing production in-house offers a number of advantages for Apple, such as letting it better control R&D as well as lowering its margins, thereby making more profit.
Via: Apple Insider