While Popular Android smartphone companies are gearing up to launch their upcoming smartphone with 5G capabilities which could launch in 2019. Apple is planning to launch 5G iPhones in 2020. According to the International Data Corporation (IDC) speculate that smartphone sales in India in 2019 will be driven by 5G, and customers will start seeing 5G on their smartphones sometime in the second half of 2019. But Apple taking it at a slow pace where we can see the first iPhone with 5G modems in the second half of 2020.
According to tech news platform Fast Company, Apple plans to use Intel’s 8161 5G modem chip in its 2020 phones. If everything goes as planned, Intel will be the sole provider of iPhone modems. Mel hopes to fabricate the 8161 using its 10-nanometer process, which increases transistor density for more speed and efficiency. It seems that Apple is not to take charge of things and compete with rest of mobile manufactures this would remain as a unique brand. Apple will wait until it is 100 per cent sure that the 5G infrastructure and devices are ready to complement each other.
Intel has been working on a precursor to the 8161 called the 8060, which will be used for prototyping and testing the 5G iPhone, the report claimed. With the current bandwidth allocation of US’ 5G providers, AT&T and Verizon, lying in the millimetre-wave spectrum, Intel’s modems would need to provide high performance over long durations. The report claims that these modems are generating higher-than-normal levels of heat, which would compromise the iPhone’s battery performance.
Intel is not the only company that is developing 5G modems for smartphones, as Qualcomm and MediaTek are also developing such chipsets. On contrary, smartphone manufacturers Oppo, Huawei, and Xiaomi are expected to contain 5G modem chips made by Qualcomm and are expected to debut at the Mobile World Congress in February. But there have been several problems like overheating with 5G modems. Manufacturers are still working on a fix.
While Apple is not expected to break its tie-up with Intel for iPhone-ready 5G modems, the reports claim that the company has held talks with MediaTek, though that would be considered as “Plan B”.
In between, Intel told The Verge that its “5G customer engagements and roadmap have not changed for 2018 through 2020. We remain committed to our 5G plans and projects.”