Qualcomm Says Its Modem Chips Won't Be Used in 2018 iPhone Models

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Qualcomm Says Its Modem Chips Won't Be Used in 2018 iPhone Models
  • This development was confirmed in the Q3 earnings call
  • Intel baseband chips will be used in 2018 iPhone models
  • Qualcomm recently took a dig at Apple's modems

As part of its earnings call for the third quarter of fiscal year 2018, chipmaker Qualcomm on Wednesday announced that it would no longer be making modems for new iPhone models, but will continue to do so for Apple's legacy iPhone variants such as the iPhone 7, iPhone 7 Plus, and more. This development comes months after a report had suggested that Apple would ditch Qualcomm completely and look towards Intel for baseband chips to be embedded in the company's 2018 lineup of iPhone models. This development comes in the wake of a legal tussle between Apple and Qualcomm that is expected to result in fines of more than a billion dollars.

A report by CNBC noted Qualcomm's announcement on a severed partnership with Apple. "We believe Apple intends to solely use our competitors' modems rather than our modems in its next iPhone release. We will continue to provide modems for Apple legacy devices," said a Qualcomm's finance head George Davis during the earnings call. By competitor, the company means Intel which is the only other modem supplier for Apple's iPhone lineup. Intel chips were first introduced with the iPhone 7, however, Apple has been using a combination of Qualcomm and Intel chips in its smartphones up until this year.

Earlier this week, a study by Ookla, the company behind the Speedtest app and website, revealed that the current iPhone lineup trails in download speeds compared to the latest smartphones from Samsung and Google. In the test, Ookla noted that the Samsung Galaxy S9+ recorded speeds of up to 38.4Mbps while the iPhone X managed about 29.7Mbps.

Qualcomm also recently took a dig at Apple. The chip manufacturer, in its advertising, compared its chip to the Intel XMM7480, the LTE chip used in certain iPhone X models, and claimed that Qualcomm's chips gain in terms of latency, download speeds, and upload speeds.

In its third quarter results for 2018, Qualcomm reported a 4.2 percent rise in quarterly revenue, with its Snapdragon mobile chipset series in high demand from global manufacturers including Samsung and Xiaomi. Revenue recorded in the quarter was $5.60 billion (roughly Rs. 38,400 crores), up from $5.37 billion recorded in the same period last year.


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Further reading: Qualcomm, Apple, Intel
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