After years of preparation, underscoring how difficult it is to develop cellular modems, Apple will debut their own custom-designed 5G modem in the 2023 iPhone lineup, Barclays analysts write in a not to clients.
Apple’s custom-designed 5G cellular modem will likely debut in all 2023 iPhone models, according to Barclays analysts Blayne Curtis and Thomas O’Malley. In a supplier-focused research note shared with MacRumors, the analysts said chipmakers Qorvo and Broadcom should be among the companies that benefit from the shift to Apple’s in-house solution.
In December 2019, Intel completed the sale of the majority of its smartphone modem business to Apple. The transaction, valued at $1 billion, was announced on July 25, 2019. Approximately 2,200 Intel employees joined Apple, along with intellectual property, equipment, and leases.
Combining the acquired patents for current and future wireless technology with Apple’s existing portfolio, at the time of the Intel transaction, Apple held over 17,000 wireless technology patents, ranging from protocols for cellular standards to modem architecture and modem operation.
MacDailyNews Note: As seen in the image above, Apple currently uses Qualcomm’s Snapdragon X55 modem in iPhone 12 models. In 2019, a legal settlement between Apple and Qualcomm revealed that Apple will likely use the Snapdragon X60 modem in 2021 iPhones, followed by the Snapdragon X65 modem in 2022 iPhones.