Intel is all set to be a big part of this year’s iPhones. The chip maker told the Nikkei Asian Review that it’s begun mass production on the XMM 7560 modem chips, representing a big step forward for the company.
That’s because Intel’s new XMM 7560 chipset supports both CDMA and GSM communications technologies. Most US carriers support the latter, but others like Verizon and Sprint favor the former. Manufacturers are thus forced to create multiple variants of their phones for each network.
The XMM 7560 could thus be used for all iPhones across the world without having to bother about compatibility. This is a huge advantage for Apple since it can finally abandon Qualcomm’s modem chips. The two are involved in multiple cases across the world in a fierce legal battle which will probably take years to resolve.
Unfortunately for Apple, it doesn’t seem like Intel is ready to take on all iPhone orders by itself. The former apparently wanted to switch to the latter completely in 2018, but it looks like there are some quality issues preventing this. Qualcomm will likely be present on this year’s lineup as a result, but its days could be numbered next year.
Apple and Intel’s 5G iPhone
The XMM 7560 is the first Intel chipset to hit data download speeds of 1 gigabit per second, bringing it one step closer to 5G standards. Apple is rumored to be working on a 5G-ready iPhone with the brand at the moment.
This 5G iPhone could be ready by 2019 or 2020. The modem is said to be co-designed by Apple and Intel engineers. It might get placed on an integrated SoC alongside the CPU and GPU. Apple gained permission to test 5G networks last year, while Intel debuted its 5G modem at the CES 2017.