Apple has renewed its modem chip licensing arrangement with Qualcomm until March 2027, Qualcomm announced today during its first earnings call of 2024. Apple’s arrangement has been extended for another two years, meaning Qualcomm modems can be expected in future iPhone models.
Apple has been building its 5G modem chip in-house for several years. The technique would allow it to rely on something other than Qualcomm for 5G chips, but several setbacks have hampered Apple’s research.
Apple initially planned to have an Apple-designed modem chip ready by 2024, but it fell short of that goal. The business then planned to include the modem chip in an iPhone SE that would be released in the spring of 2025, but that will not happen either.
Apple has encountered problems with the Intel code it has been using since acquiring Intel’s modem chip business. Apple has had to rewrite code, and introducing new features has caused existing ones to fail. Apple must also avoid infringing Qualcomm patents while developing its modem.
The future iPhone 16 Pro versions, anticipated to be released in 2024, are expected to include Qualcomm’s Snapdragon X75 modem, which provides enhanced carrier aggregation and a more power-efficient transceiver.