“While rumors have long claimed that Apple has plans to replace Intel’s x86 chips in Macs with its own custom ARM Application Processors, there are a series of more valuable opportunities available to Apple’s internal silicon design team, each of which has the potential to replicate Apple’s history of beating Intel in mobile chips,” Daniel Eran Dilger writes for AppleInsider.

“Rather than further alienating Intel with plans to replace the Mac’s dependance on x86 chips (for fewer than 20 million computers sold every year),” Dilger writes, “it would appear to make more sense for Apple to first apply its chip design team to the task of replacing Qualcomm as its supplier for the order-of-magnitude greater number of 4G baseband chips it has to buy (at a similar name-brand premium) for use in its iPhones and cellular iPads (north of 200 million per year).”

“According to the bill of material estimates (of unverifiable accuracy) published by IHS iSuppli, Apple’s own A8X Application Processor (together with the separate M8 motion coprocessor!) ostensibly costs Apple $22 per device, while Qualcomm’s MDM9625 baseband and other wireless chips cost $33 per device,” Dilger writes. “Eliminating Qualcomm by creating a custom, in-house baseband chip (or integrating the technology into its own Ax Application Processor package) wouldn’t completely erase the need to include other wireless chips, but would shave off significant expense.”

Much more in the full article here.