According to TF Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, Apple is planning to use its own modem chip for iPhones starting in 2025. This would mark a significant departure from the company’s current practice of using Qualcomm modems in its iPhones.
Apple aims to ditch Qualcomm’s 5G modems in iPhones
Kuo shared the following statement on his blog:
Two other potential risks for Qualcomm are that the market share of Exynos 2400 in Samsung mobile phones is higher than expected, and Apple is expected to use its own modem chip starting in 2025. I will discuss more details in the future.
The analyst previously said that the fourth-generation iPhone SE would be Apple’s first device with the custom-designed 5G modem, but it’s not entirely clear if this is still the plan. In July, it was reported that mass production of the fourth-generation iPhone SE was delayed until 2025, so there is still a chance that it could be the first device with Apple’s modem. However, there have been conflicting rumors about the project, so it’s possible that Apple could choose to use a different device for its first modem chip.
Apple has reportedly been planning its modem for over five years, and it acquired most of Intel’s smartphone modem business in 2019. This move gave Apple the necessary expertise and resources to develop its own modem chips.
It’s unclear if an Apple-designed 5G modem would have any consumer benefits over Qualcomm modems. However, it would reduce Apple’s reliance on Qualcomm on the supplier side. In 2017, Apple sued Qualcomm over alleged anticompetitive practices and $1 billion in unpaid royalty rebates. The two companies settled the lawsuit in 2019, but Apple has continued to work on its own 5G chips.
If Apple is able to successfully develop its own 5G modem, it would give the company more control over the iPhone’s wireless performance. It could also help Apple reduce the cost of its iPhones.
As for right now, we’ll have to wait and see how Apple’s plans for its own modem chips pan out. However, it’s clear that the company is serious about developing its own wireless technology. This could have a significant impact on the iPhone market in the years to come.