Intel puts new 5G modem on hold after Apple snub

Intel 5G Modem

Intel 5G Modem

According to Calcalis, Apple has informed the chip firm that the 2020 iPhone won't be using Intel 5G modems. "We remain committed to our 5G plans and projects". Securing a deal with the iPhone maker would strengthen Intel's market position amid the shift to 5G, a set of networking technologies now being implemented by major carriers.

Shrout stated in his report that "Upholding Qualcomm's request to prevent Apple from importing iPhones that use Intel modem technology could imperil next-gen technology". It looked like Apple wanted to source iPhone 5G chips from anyone but Qualcomm, and since Intel provides a portion of the LTE chips in the last two iPhone versions, the giant chipmaker seemed like the obvious choice.

Part of the reason that Sunny Peak had to be postponed for the time being is because Apple would have been the "key mobile customer" and would have expected them to be the "main volume driver" for the product.

Israeli website CTech, which cites internal Intel communications and people familiar with the matter, reports that Apple has notified Intel it will not use Sunny Peak chips in future devices.

If Apple makes good on both plans, Intel could be in for a real bruisin'.

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The new chip, the XMM 7560, is the first Intel modem chip that could hit 1 gigabit speeds, necessary for 5G.

Keddy admitted that Intel has a "late start" in this market and believes the company was now on track to be a leader in 5G. Apple is also reportedly planning to dump Intel's x86 chips in favor of its own custom-designed processors in at least some Macs sometime in the same year.

Kuo also expects that the 6.5-inch iPhone 11 Plus - or whatever Apple calls the larger sequel to the iPhone X - will come in three colors: black, white, and gold.

Still, all of this is another cloud hanging over Intel's head as its board searches for a new CEO, after Intel's former CEO Brian Krzanich, suddenly and unceremoniously resigned.

"To us, this confirms the strategic dead-end in which Intel is in mobile", writes Ferragu.

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