Apple would not be ahead of the curve with its 5G modems, and there would still be a lot of work to do before they equip its iPhone. It means that Tim Cook’s firm will be dependent on Qualcomm in the meantime.
Apple’s 5G modems will take time to get up and running
Qualcomm can plan for the medium term with Apple without too much hassle. Indeed, the American firm is not yet ready to design its 5G chips. And it will take a lot of patience since Apple’s 5G modems will not be available until 2025. Until then, Qualcomm will still be Apple’s leading supplier.
How can such a delay be explained? The American site The Information, which made a lengthy investigation, articulates it by the divorce between Intel and Apple, and a calendar that has evolved following this event.
The Information site states: “In interviews with potential team members, Apple told engineers that they expected to have their modem ready by 2025. It will, therefore, be necessary to wait to see the arrival on the market of iPhone fully equipped by Apple.
An alternative to Qualcomm that is slow to come
In the meantime, the first iPhone with 5G integration should be available next year. It is made possible by the agreement signed between Apple and Qualcomm after years of a legal battle. It should be noted that this arrangement is planned for 5 years, the period necessary for Apple to produce its own 5G chips.
It should be recalled that the dispute between the two parties lasted two years: Apple blaming Qualcomm for abusing its dominant position to gain greater financial margins, and Qualcomm considering that Apple was not meeting some of its contractual commitments.
The fact that the two companies have found an arrangement is therefore rather a surprise, even if Apple had planned a plan B with Intel to become its modem supplier. The negotiations had finally not been successful, and Intel preferred to redirect its strategy towards its historical activity, namely processor design.