According to reports, Apple is working closely with Intel to integrate their modem chips into the next edition of iPhone. If the development turns out to be true, then Apple will ditch the chips manufactured by Qualcomm, which is currently in use on Apple’s devices. It remains to be seen as to whether Apple will use Intel modem chips in iPad and MacBook.
A report by a leading US media channel disclosed that Intel’s modem chipsets will be integrated into iPhones used on A&T’s US network and select versions of the smartphone shipped to overseas market including emerging countries like India.
However, iPhones sold in China and running on Verizon network will still make use of Qualcomm chips. We believe that Apple is experimenting Intel model chips to test its functionality. If the chip provides excellent signal strength coupled with faster access to the web, Apple will most likely replace Qualcomm within the next 2 years.
Soon after the news broke on June 10, the shares of Qualcomm fell by 1.7 percent, while Intel’s stock increased by 0.3 percent. Moreover, shares of Apple decreased by 0.5 percent, thus giving clear signals of the consequences if Apple decided to go ahead with the plan to make use of Intel’s modem chips.
Earlier in April during a quarterly presser, Qualcomm Chief Executive Officer Steve Mollenkopf hinted at a possible change by a major customer who will likely switch to multiple providers in the near future. We reached out to Apple, Qualcomm and Intel but the companies declined to comment on speculations.
Until now, Qualcomm is the sole supplier of modem chips for the iPhone. However, Apple sources have been considering approaching other providers not only to target more customers but also to provide something new for customers.
If you look at Samsung, the company makes use of Snapdragon 802 SoC on its Galaxy 7 smartphones, while other versions of the same phone ships with Exynos processors developed in-house by Samsung.