Apple could debut its own in-house 5G modems in 2023

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An Apple 5G modem might look like this
An Apple 5G modem is allegedly in development, and could be in iPhones in a few years.
Artists concept: Cult of Mac

Apple’s transition from using Qualcomm modems to its own 5G designs could roll out as soon as the next couple of years, TF International Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo suggests, in a research note seen by Cult of Mac.

Apple’s custom 5G modem might make 2023 iPhone faster than ever

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An Apple 5G modem might look like this
An Apple 5G modem is allegedly in development, and could be in iPhones in a few years.
Artists concept: Cult of Mac

Apple’s move away from Qualcomm modems could begin in 2023. Analysts predict that all the iPhone models released in that year will use 5G modems Apple designed itself.

This is another example of Apple developing critical components for its products in-house rather than depending on an outside company.

Apple cracks on with building its own mobile modems

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qualcomm.modem.chip
Apple currently relies on modems designed by Qualcomm.
Photo: Qualcomm

Apple has started building its own cellular modems for use in future devices. Johny Srouji, Apple’s senior vice president of hardware technologies, made the announcement to employees Thursday during a virtual town hall meeting.

The company currently relies on Qualcomm modems, after restoring its relationship with the company following a prolonged clash over patents and royalties. However, Apple has made no bones about its desire to bring this part of its manufacturing in-house. It even bought Intel’s modem business for $1 billion in 2019, the second-largest acquisition in Apple history.

Apple might drop $1 billion on Intel’s modem biz

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This Intel modem will likely power the first 5G iPhone.
One of Intel's first 5G modems.
Photo: Intel

Apple could soon become the new owner of Intel’s giant trove of modem-related patents according to a new report on the two sides’ negotiation.

Intel decided to get out of the 5G modem game earlier this year after Apple struck a deal to use Qualcomm’s modems for the next couple of years. It appears that Intel’s loss could be a big win for Apple’s own efforts to become less dependent on third-parties for iPhone chips.

First 5G modem made by Apple won’t arrive until 2025

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This Intel modem will likely power the first 5G iPhone.
Intel pulled the plug on its 5G modems.
Photo: Intel

Apple’s custom-built smartphone modems likely won’t make their way into iPhones and iPads until 2025 at the earliest, according to a new report from The Information.

Intel’s strained relationship with Apple is on full display in the beefy report that reveals Apple had problems with Intel long before 5G modems became an issue. Back in early 2017, Intel struggled to supply Apple with an LTE modem destined for the 2018 iPhone lineup. Despite overhauling the modem four times, Intel nearly missed the deadline.

Apple likely paid $6 billion in Qualcomm settlement

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Qualcomm headquarters
Qualcomm just got paid!
Photo: Qualcomm

Qualcomm probably didn’t get the full $7 billion payment it was hoping to score from Apple as a result of the two companies’ wide-ranging legal battle.

Full details of the settlement between Apple and Qualcomm weren’t revealed when the two sides announced their truce earlier this week. However, an UBS analyst used Qualcomm’s recent guidance to estimate how much Apple agreed to pay and it looks like both sides made some small compromises.

Apple could soon build its own iPhone modems and Mac processors

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chips
Apple is bringing more chip development in-house.
Photo: Apple

Apple is interested in developing its own in-house ARM-based processors for MacBooks, modem chips for iPhones, and a “chip that integrates touch, fingerprint and display driver functions,” claims a new report.

Doing this would allow Apple to lessen its reliance on companies on companies like Qualcomm, which Apple is currently locked in a legal battle with.