Apple Reportedly Shelves 'Walkie-Talkie' Feature Allowing iPhone-to-iPhone Messaging Without Wi-Fi or Cellular
Apple has shelved a "walkie-talkie" feature that would have allowed iPhone users to communicate with each other in areas without cellular coverage, such as while skiing or hiking, according to The Information.
The report claims Apple was working with Intel on the project, which supposedly would have enabled iPhone users to send messages directly to other iPhone users over long-distance radio waves that bypass cellular networks, adding that the technology was designed to run over the 900 MHz radio spectrum.
This feature is not to be confused with the Apple Watch's Walkie-Talkie feature, which relies on Wi-Fi or a cellular connection.
The project is said to have been suspended in part because the Apple executive heading it, Rubén Caballero, left the company earlier this year. The technology also relied on Intel modems, according to the report, and Apple is expected to start using Qualcomm modems in iPhones again starting in 2020.
The technology could still show up in future iPhones, but development of the feature appears to be on hold for now.