Apple Engineering Leader Handling 5G Efforts Leaves Company

Rubén Caballero, a hardware engineering executive at Apple who worked with suppliers on modem hardware, recently left the company, reports The Information.

Caballero's departure comes just after Apple settled its lawsuit with Qualcomm and inked a deal that will see Qualcomm supplying chips for future Apple devices, including the 5G chips Apple will need for its 2020 iPhones.


Caballero joined Apple back in 2005, and his name has been included on hundreds of Apple patents related to wireless technologies. Caballero is a well-known part of Apple's antenna engineering group, gaining public recognition following the "Antennagate" situation that impacted the iPhone 4.

A person familiar with Caballero's work at Apple told The Information that he had been responsible for "leading Apple's charge into 5G." Caballero's email address is no longer valid, his phone number is no longer active, and he does not appear in Apple's internal directory.

There is no word on why Caballero left the company, but Apple has been restructuring some of its chip teams. Apple's modem engineering efforts were put under chipmaking chief Johny Srouji back in February. Caballero and Apple both declined to comment on his departure.

Apple is planning to release its first 5G iPhone in 2020 and while the launch of the device is still more than a year away, Apple is already working on the future ‌iPhone‌ and ironing out technical details.

Apple will use Qualcomm chips for its first 5G iPhones, and may also be planning to source some chips from Samsung. In the future, Apple is planning to use its own custom-designed modem chips, but Apple-designed modems won't be ready for "another few years."

Top Rated Comments

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19 months ago
I try not to read the tea leaves... he's been there 13 years as an executive, I made tens of thousands just with average, retail Mac Genius ESPP... this dude could buy an island with his grants ... if he's in his 50s he has 20-30 good years of health left, I'd use them.
Score: 22 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
19 months ago
Is it me or is there quite a few execs and other high talent individuals leaving all at once?

https://www.macrumors.com/2019/04/25/apple-industrial-design-team-employee-changes/
Score: 14 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
19 months ago
Remember that Apple just hired Intel’s chief of 5G design. Did they do that because Caballero was leaving, or did Caballero leave because they hired that guy?
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
19 months ago
Probably left for Qualcomm to get a bigger paycheck. Some engineers also prefer to work for companies more geared towards pure R&D. Now that Qualcomm has secured income from Apple, they're probably in an even better position to poach engineers.
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
19 months ago
Laughing at all the people who think the only reason to leave is you're fed up.
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
19 months ago

I wonder what Qualcomm's secret recipe is?

Pursue modem excellence as if the company depended on it instead of dabbling like a dilettante.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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