KGI Expects Intel to Be Exclusive Supplier of Modems in 2018 iPhones

Discussion in ' News Discussion' started by MacRumors, Feb 4, 2018.

  1. MacRumors macrumors bot


    Apr 12, 2001

    Intel could be the exclusive supplier of LTE modems for all new iPhones launched in 2018, according to KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo.


    The key takeaway of the research note, obtained by MacRumors:
    Kuo previously expected Intel to supply 70 percent of the modems, with Qualcomm providing the remaining 30 percent of orders, but he now believes Intel will be the sole supplier given several competitive advantages.

    First and foremost, Intel's latest XMM 7560 modem [PDF] supports both GSM and CDMA, meaning that Apple could release a single iPhone model that works across AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile, and Sprint. Intel modems previously lacked CDMA, meaning Apple could never fully ditch Qualcomm for all iPhone models.

    Apple is also embroiled in a major lawsuit with Qualcomm over anticompetitive licensing practices, and Kuo believes the iPhone maker switching to Intel as its exclusive modem supplier will place added pressure on Qualcomm.

    Kuo added that it's too early to tell if Intel will be able to maintain its position of exclusivity in the future, as Apple typically prefers to diversify its supply chain. He adds that Apple may give orders to Qualcomm again in exchange for concessions in the ongoing lawsuit between the two companies.

    Qualcomm was Apple's exclusive supplier of baseband chips until the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus, when Intel began to share some of the orders.

    In order to make up for the lost iPhone business, Kuo 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.

    Kuo also reiterated that LTE transmission speeds will increase significantly in new iPhone models released in the second half of 2018.

    In a previous research note from November, Kuo highlighted that Intel's XMM 7560 modem supports 4x4 MIMO technology, compared to only 2x2 MIMO in the iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus, and iPhone X. The faster LTE speeds will also be made possible by an upgraded antenna design in the next iPhones.

    Article Link: KGI Expects Intel to Be Exclusive Supplier of Modems in 2018 iPhones
  2. predation macrumors 65816

    Apr 3, 2013
    Hopefully it’s better than this current garbage.
  3. Jax44 macrumors 6502a


    Jul 24, 2010
    Carmel, California
    If the Intel chip will work with all US carriers, maybe we can have sim free?.
  4. BootsWalking macrumors 6502a

    Feb 1, 2014
    Good, suck on that Qualcomm. I don't care if Intel's offering is modestly slower or less power-efficient than Qualcomm's - that's a small price to play to break up their monopolistic hold on the market. I'm sure Intel will improve with each generation.
  5. AngerDanger, Feb 4, 2018
    Last edited: Feb 4, 2018

    AngerDanger macrumors 68040


    Dec 9, 2008
    My immediate thought after seeing that image was “Apple is developing an Intel-based iPhone?”

  6. GrumpyMom, Feb 4, 2018
    Last edited: Feb 4, 2018

    GrumpyMom macrumors 604


    Sep 11, 2014
    I don’t know what to make of the feud with Qualcomm. I just know that for the past couple of years if I actually wanted to hear my callers clearly and they want to hear me clearly on a consistent basis, I had to make my voice calls on my Android phones, the best being my HTC 10 and now the honors go to my HTC-made Pixel 2. Honestly this may have been going on even longer, but I only discovered the superior call quality of my Android phones in that time frame because I was exclusively on iPhones until I decided to try a Note 7.

    I don’t say that as an iPhone basher. My main phone number is on the sim I use in my iPhones, since iMessage is my main form of communication with teachers and fellow parents right now. So I very much like iPhones and just want iPhones to be much better for voice calling than they currently are. My husband says he gets better call clarity over AirPods but that’s not the solution I’m looking for.

    FWIW, my Intel based 8 Plus and my former iPhone X are much improved over my Qualcomm based iPhone 7 Plus. But was that due to Apple handicapping the Qualcomm modem to match or be worse than the Intel modem? When I briefly had a Qualcomm based iPhone 8 Plus it oddly had much worse call issues than my current Intel based 8 Plus.
  7. macsrcool1234 macrumors 65816

    Oct 7, 2010
    Yes, because it's not like Intel holds monopolistic shares in any part of the market. Yay for overpriced, insecure hardware in our phones!
  8. vipergts2207 macrumors 68000


    Apr 7, 2009
    Columbus, OH
    It’s not like Apple will be passing along any savings to us.
  9. neutralguy macrumors 6502a

    Jun 5, 2015
    The irony...
  10. jent macrumors 6502a


    Mar 31, 2010
    What do you mean? Apple generally sells full-priced, unlocked, SIM free iPhones a few weeks or months after launch.
  11. thejtray macrumors newbie


    Sep 19, 2017
    Boise, ID
    I believe Qualcomm owns the rights to CDMA. Thus if anyone is “sucking it” it will be Intel and Apple. When Verizon finally moves from CDMA is when we the consumer will have better choice here in the States. That’s not expected until 2019/20. To me this is another uninformed report from KGI.
  12. mtneer macrumors 68030


    Sep 15, 2012
    I thought Qualcomm gets paid for its Intellectual Property no matter who actually manufactures the chip? So, maybe this will not be a big deal for Qualcomm after all?
  13. pike908 macrumors member

    Jan 22, 2015
    Boulder, CO
    Yeah, I thought so too. Perhaps Intel pays the royalty in Qualcomm instead of Apple? If that is the case, I imagine the Intel royalty is less than Apple since from what I gather Qualcomm is trying to charge Apple based on the retail price of the phone. I would also imagine that Qualcomm must make the CDMA available to Intel under FRAND.
  14. d-oost macrumors 6502a

    Jan 10, 2016
    Yes, replace one monopolistic company with the other one. That'll teach them!
  15. gumbyjunior1 macrumors regular


    Nov 22, 2013
    This can be good where they have fewer different brands of chips on the iPhone. I would not be surprised if they decided one day to have Intel make all the chips for the iPhone. Including the A11 chips...
    --- Post Merged, Feb 4, 2018 ---
    Yup. Same thought here.
  16. Solomani macrumors 68040


    Sep 25, 2012
    Alberto, Canado
    Does this Kuo guy suddenly come up with all these things in his head, wakes up in the middle of the night and then tweets out these rumors while laying in bed?
  17. Avieshek Suspended


    Dec 7, 2013
    Seriously, Intel? Apple is gradually spiraling downwards.
  18. Jax44 macrumors 6502a


    Jul 24, 2010
    Carmel, California
    I mean no SIM card at all, like Apple tried to do awhile back.

    You could just choose the carrier in settings.
  19. nekonokami macrumors member


    Jan 20, 2011
    That is a solution to the privacy protection efforts of Apple.

    A shame.
  20. nviz22 macrumors 601


    Jun 24, 2013
    Sim free, 4x4 MIMO, 256 WQAM, 600 MHz all at launch please.
  21. jent macrumors 6502a


    Mar 31, 2010
    Ah, that would be cool. I believe that's the Apple SIM (eSIM with a physical Apple SIM card, if I'm not mistaken) used in some LTE iPads.
  22. matthewv1227 macrumors 6502

    Sep 13, 2014
    While this would all be great, it's the US carriers that create the issue with not being able to simply pick a carrier and create the need for carrier-specific sims. The pixel 2 has an e-sim, which is similar to the apple SIM card in iPads and the Apple Watch, however no carriers agreed to "join-in" and it only works with Google's Project-Fi network.
  23. predation macrumors 65816

    Apr 3, 2013
    I really felt screwed when Apple switched to intel based modems for the 7/8/10.

    I noticed a substantial performance loss in my area when I switched to the 7.

    And they dumbed down the Qualcomm modem to make it on par with the intel.

    Shame on you Apple.
  24. BootsWalking macrumors 6502a

    Feb 1, 2014
    "Intel already announced the XMM 7560 chip that'll be available in phones in 2018, but now it's said it's got gigabit LTE working in prototypes today. The 7560 also adds support for network technology called CDMA that, while older, is still important for Verizon customers."
    --- Post Merged, Feb 4, 2018 ---
    "Monopolistic shares" is not the same thing as being a monopoly. If you have no competitors then you are a monopoly. Intel has competitors in each of their markets, thus they are not a monopoly. Qualcomm currently has no competitors in the USA for a CDMA-supported chip, thus they are a monopoly. That's about to change.
  25. BornAgainApple macrumors 6502a


    Jun 9, 2009
    I would prefer Apple find another modem supplier, not a good idea to put all your eggs in one basket.

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