Apple is rumored to be developing its own 5G chip for future iPhones, but Qualcomm is expected to remain the modem supplier for all iPhone 15 and iPhone 16 models, indicating that the Apple chip won’t debut until at least 2025.


In a research note on Friday, Haitong International Securities analyst Jeff Boo said he expects iPhone models released in 2024 to use Qualcomm’s as-yet-unannounced Snapdragon X75 modem. Like the Snapdragon X70, the X75 is expected to be manufactured based on TSMC’s 4nm process, which contributes to improved power efficiency.

In June, TF International Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo indicated that Qualcomm would remain the exclusive supplier of 5G modems for new iPhone models in 2023 because Apple failed to complete development of its own replacement chip. At the time, Kuo said he believed Apple would continue developing its 5G chip, but did not provide a time frame for when the chip would be ready for use in iPhones.

All four iPhone 15 models are expected to be equipped with Qualcomm’s latest Snapdragon X70 modem, which was announced in February. Like the Snapdragon X65 modem in the iPhone 14 models, the X70 theoretically supports download speeds of up to 10Gbps, with newly added AI capabilities for faster average speeds, improved coverage, better signal quality, lower latency, and improved power efficiency by up to 60%.

All in all, while initial reports claimed that Apple’s 5G modem could debut in iPhones as early as 2023, it could take at least a few years to switch.

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