2018 iPhones to use Intel modems exclusively, ditching Qualcomm: KGI

iPhone X

Rumors about the 2018 iPhone models keep growing head of the official announcement later this year, thanks to Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo of KGI Securities. Back in November last year he said that the 2018 iPhone models will come with a faster Intel XMM 7560 modem and Qualcomm SDX 20 LTE Cat. 18 Modem with support for 4×4 MIMO technology.  He has also said that 70%-80% of the modem chips for 2018 iPhone models will come from Intel and the remaining will use Qualcomm modems.

2018 iPhone Intel XMM 7560 and Qualcomm Snapdragon X20

Now in the latest research note KGI reports that Apple will use Intel modems for this year’s iPhones exclusively, amidst Apple’s ongoing legal battles with Qualcomm. He also said that Intel can meet Apple’s technical requirements and offers more competitive prices compared to Qualcomm.

Further, unlike previous modems, Intel’s XMM 7560 modem has support for both GSM and CDMA, so there might be a single iPhone model that might work across all the four major U.S. carriers – AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile, and Sprint, instead of two models.

KGI, however doesn’t rule out Qualcomm returning to the supply chain, if Apple might give orders to Qualcomm again in exchange for concessions in the ongoing lawsuit between the two companies. KGI also says there there is a risk that Intel may not be ready for 5G networking as quickly as Qualcomm.

He also expects Qualcomm will be more aggressive in securing orders from Chinese smartphone makers. However, he believes these Chinese companies don’t want a monopolized market, so Qualcomm’s ability to gain market share in the country may be limited.

Once again, he says that Intel’s chip will support dual SIM and dual standby. Again, it is not clear if it will be dual SIM slots or if one of the SIM cards would be Apple SIM or embedded SIM (e-SIM) like the iPad Pro.

KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, in a research note, said:

We expect Intel to be the exclusive supplier of baseband chip for 2H18 new iPhone models, while Qualcomm may not have a share of the orders at all.

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Author: Srivatsan Sridhar

Srivatsan Sridhar is a Mobile Technology Enthusiast who is passionate about Mobile phones and Mobile apps. He uses the phones he reviews as his main phone. You can follow him on Twitter and Instagram