Since even before Apple purchases Intel’s modem division we know that the Cupertino company is developing its own 5G modem. A key component that, unlike the others, still requires third parties. At least until 2023, according to Ming-Chi Kuo, we will see the new 5G modem designed by Apple.
Apple’s 5G modem coming to 2023 iPhones, Kuo says
According to a famous analyst, Apple plans to incorporate its own 5G modem in the 2023 iPhone generation, “at the earliest”. With what will be, if nothing changes in the naming structure, the iPhone 15, Apple will no longer rely on Qualcomm modems for iPhone connectivity.
We anticipate that the iPhone will adopt Apple’s own-designed 5G baseband chips by 2023 at the earliest. As Android sales in the high-end 5G phone market are weak, Qualcomm will be forced to compete for more orders in the low-end market to make up for Apple’s loss of orders. When supply constraints improve, MediaTek and Qualcomm will have less bargaining power over brands, which will put significantly more competitive pressure on the mid-range and low-end market.
We expect Apple’s new modems to significantly improve iPhone connection speeds, reduce latency, and generally have more balanced power consumption. Significant improvements over the current Qualcomm or Intel modems we have seen in several generations of iPhone.
Apple’s plans for developing its modems go back quite some time. They predate the purchase of Intel’s modem division that occurred in 2019. A move that, with the information we have available, was the trigger for Apple to end its long-running legal battle with Qualcomm and sign a multi-year contract.
Apple has been designing, not manufacturing, the most important components of the various devices it sells for many years. From processors to power management chips, the company sees customization as a clear differentiator. The truth, taking for example the M1 chips as a reference, is that Apple’s designs are light years ahead of those of other companies. There are still a couple of years to go before we see the new Apple modems, but we can expect significant improvements.