2023 iPhones could feature Apple’s own 5G cellular modem – Report

A new report claims that Apple will begin using its own 5G cellular modem on all the 2023 iPhones. The report says that chipmakers Broadcom and Qorvo will benefit from Apple’s switch to its own modems and away from those offered by Qualcomm.

In a supplier-focused research note by Barclays analysts’ Thomas O’Malley and Blayne Curtis states that the modem Apple is developing is going to support both mm-Wave 5G and sub-6Ghz 5G networks.

iPhone 13 - 5G

Apple could integrate its own 5G cellular modem in 2023 iPhones

The research note was seen by MacRumors, the report goes in sync with Fast Company’s claims that Apple is likely to develop its own 5G modem. Since Intel left the 5G division back in 2017, Apple has been working on its own 5G modems. It may very well be a possibility that this piece of business will be outsourced to the Cupertino tech giant’s long-term chip manufacturer TSMC.

Currently, Apple uses Qualcomm modems including the Snapdragon X55 modem in iPhone 12 models. In 2019, a legal settlement between Apple and Qualcomm showed that Apple will likely use the Snapdragon X60 modem in 2021 iPhones, and then the Snapdragon X65 modem integrated into 2022 iPhones.

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

Fast Company’s Mark Sullivan and Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman are among several sources who have reported that Apple is working on its own modem for future iPhones. Apple reportedly began development of the modem in 2020, after acquiring the majority of Intel’s smartphone modem business a year earlier to bolster its efforts. Barclays previously said the modem will support both sub-6GHz and mmWave bands of 5G, as to be expected.

It is still not clear as Apple has relied on cellular modems from other companies like Intel and Qualcomm for its iPhones before. The latest iPhone 12 features a Qualcomm Snapdragon X55 5G modem, even the next iPhone 13 series is rumored to feature a Snapdragon X60 modem. But it is also reported that Apple has already started hiring engineers to start working on the development of the 5G cellular modems.

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About the Author

Usman has been playing games for as long as he can remember. He is an editor at iThinkDifferent and writes about games, Apple news, hardware, productivity guides, and more. When not writing for iTD, Usman loves to play competitive Team Fortress 2, spends time honing his football skills, and watches superhero movies.