Apple working on its own cellular modem, may replace components from Qualcomm soon
This year, Apple kicked off the development of its first internal cellular modem which will enable another key strategic transition, its senior Vice President of Hardware Technologies Johny Srouji told staff
December 11, 2020 / 10:47 PM IST
Currently, Apple uses parts from Qualcomm for the latest iPhones with 5G. (Image: Reuters)
With an aim to replace components from Qualcomm, Apple has started building its own cellular modem for future devices, its senior Vice President of Hardware Technologies Johny Srouji told staff on December 10.
"This year, we kicked off the development of our first internal cellular modem which will enable another key strategic transition," Bloomberg quoted Srouji as saying.
"Long-term strategic investments like these are a critical part of enabling our products and making sure we have a rich pipeline of innovative technologies for our future," he told employees in a town hall meeting.
Explained | Why your next iPhone could be made in India and what it means for the country
He said Intel Corp’s modem business, which Apple acquired in 2019 for $1 billion, helped it build a team of hardware and software engineers to develop its own cellular modem, which enables phone calls and connection to the internet via cellular networks in a smartphone.
The new modem is amongst one of a few wireless chips which Apple designs. For Apple Watch, the firm uses W-series, while for iPhone, it uses U1 ultrawide-band chip that tells precise location information, Bloomberg reported.
Currently, Apple uses parts from Qualcomm for the latest iPhones with 5G.
With Qualcomm charging licence fee based on wireless patents it owns, Apple in 2019 signed a patent agreement with Qualcomm that includes a six-year licensing pact.