Qualcomm Extends Deal To Provide 5G Modems for Apple Via 2026

Qualcomm simply shot over a quick be aware this morning, asserting that the corporate has signed an prolonged settlement with Apple to produce 5G modem-RF chips for his or her smartphones and different merchandise that might be launched in 2024, 2025, and 2026. The bizarre Apple-related announcement, notably coming from a vendor relatively than the tech juggernaut itself, underscores the cold-but-necessary relationship between Apple and Qualcomm: Apple has made it no secret that the corporate needs to develop their very own modems and finish their reliance on Qualcomm. However with this newest deal, they’re clearly not there but. Which implies that, at the very least for the following few years, Qualcomm’s Snapdragon modems are going to stay a core a part of Apple’s cell product lineup.

The timing of this announcement comes a day earlier than Apple’s annual fall iPhone occasion – this 12 months’s titled “Wonderlust” – the place the iPhone 15 household of telephones is broadly anticipated to be launched. Qualcomm and Apple’s most up-to-date settlement, previous to at this time’s announcement, runs via the top of 2023, and the iPhone 15 era of telephones is broadly anticipated to make use of some model of Qualcomm’s 5G modem and RF front-end.

Previous that, Apple has been arduous at work on growth their very own 5G modem, based mostly largely on the mobile modem know-how they purchased from Intel back in 2019. With their very own modem, Apple would now not have to depend on Qualcomm for a vital part of their telephones, a major level of friction for the corporate given the prices and royalties concerned.

Right now’s announcement of a brand new take care of Qualcomm, nonetheless, throws some chilly water on these expectations. As at all times, the satan is within the particulars – Qualcomm’s settlement just isn’t an unique settlement – nevertheless it implies that Apple has, at a minimal, decided that they should hedge their bets and have a deal in place with Qualcomm to buy modems for the following few years ought to they’re wanted. As with the earlier deal, Qualcomm’s public expectation is that Apple will do a phased roll-out relatively than a tough change – leaving Qualcomm with presumably as little as a 20% share of Apple’s telephones in 2026 – however at 3 years out, plans can and do change, as we’ve since seen with the unique Apple-Qualcomm deal.

In the end, as Apple’s modem growth challenge is an inner challenge for a particular part, it’s seemingly the notoriously tight-lipped firm may have anything to say on the matter till they’re able to ship a modem in quantity. However by letting Qualcomm discuss their future collectively for the following three years, it makes it clear that Apple isn’t going to be setting off on their very own – at the very least, not fairly but.

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