iPhone 11, iPhone 11 Pro and iPhone 11 Pro Max Equipped With Intel Modems

Apple's new 2019 iPhone lineup uses modems from Intel rather than Qualcomm, PCMag confirmed today thanks to the devices' field test screens.

We already expected Apple to use Intel modems in the iPhone 11 and 11 Pro because Apple's renewed relationship with Qualcomm came too late in the year for it to swap over to Qualcomm modems, so PCMag's news isn't a huge surprise, but it's useful to have confirmation.


PCMag says that Intel and Qualcomm-based devices have different menu configurations for the field test screens, and Apple's newest devices use the Intel layout.

We figured this out because the field test menus on Intel-based and Qualcomm-based iPhones have different menu items, and the menu items have stayed consistent through the generations. (I checked on models from the 6s generation up to the XR.)

According to Apple, there is one model of each of the ‌iPhone 11‌, 11 Pro, and 11 Pro Max sold in the US. With one of each device in hand, I went to the field test mode and found that it had an Intel layout.

The field test information does not specify which Intel modem Apple is using, but the new iPhones are most likely equipped with the XMM 7660, the final modem that Intel produced before shutting down.

PCMag says that it expects the new iPhones will feature 20 percent faster LTE speeds than last year's model, but testing will need to be done to confirm. The ‌iPhone 11‌ will be somewhat slower than the iPhone 11 Pro because while it features Gigabit-class LTE support this year, it has 2x2 MIMO instead of 4x4 MIMO.

Early tests shared just after the ‌iPhone‌ event on September 10 suggested the ‌iPhone 11 Pro‌ was 13 percent faster than the iPhone XS, but there was no information on how the speed comparison was conducted.

Apple has used Intel modems exclusively in recent iPhones due to its legal battle with Qualcomm, but earlier this year, Apple and Qualcomm settled their differences and inked a new deal that will see Apple using Qualcomm modems in its devices for the next few years.

Apple plans to use Qualcomm technology in the 2020 ‌iPhone‌ that's expected to feature 5G support, but Apple is also developing its own modem technology and purchased much of Intel's modem division to further its goals. Apple's ultimate aim is to craft its own modem chips in house, reducing its reliance on Qualcomm, and the company has reportedly set a 2021 goal for itself.

Related Roundups: iPhone 11, iPhone 11 Pro

Top Rated Comments

(View all)
Avatar
13 months ago
5G has such poor range and requires so many more transmitters for decent coverage it'll be years before most of us will ever be using it on a day to day basis.
Score: 42 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
13 months ago
And this is one of the major reasons why I’m passing on this years phone. I can’t deal with another year of intel. I absolutely hate it on My XS Max
Score: 28 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
13 months ago
Hopefully this is the last year for Intel modems.
Score: 24 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
13 months ago
I have an Intel modem in my XS and got a dead spot right near my house every time. Was really hoping for an Qualcomm modem like my iPhone X had that never lost service in the same spot. Disappointed on this one
Score: 20 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
13 months ago

Next year's lineup is looking to be a major leap with the rumored internal components (modem chip, wireless charging, Face ID improvements, under display Touch ID, etc) and external design changes.

Prediction: Half those features likely won't pan out, and many people will also be disappointed by next year's iPhone. I suspect all the folks who are convinced that this is the wrong year to upgrade have an overly optimistic view of the future.
Score: 20 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
13 months ago
Next year's lineup is looking to be a major leap with the rumored internal components (modem chip, wireless charging, Face ID improvements, under display Touch ID, etc) and external design changes.

That being said, this year's lineup is no slouch.
Score: 19 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

Hands-On With iOS 14 Widgets, Custom Icons, and Home Screen Setup

Tuesday September 22, 2020 3:25 pm PDT by
Apple with iOS 14 introduced widgets on the Home Screen, leading to unprecedented levels of customization for the iPhone. Combined with Shortcuts that let you change an app's icon, iOS 14 lets you create a whole new look for your Home Screen. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. We've been following along with some of the creative alternative Home Screen designs that M...

New Images Leak of iPhone 12 Braided USB-C to Lightning Cable

Thursday September 24, 2020 2:37 am PDT by
Rumors suggest Apple's upcoming iPhone 12 models will ship with a new Lightning to USB-C cable that includes a braided fabric design. Images of the purported cables were leaked in July, and today leaker Mr White has shared new images that give us a closer look at what we might get included in the iPhone 12 box. The photos show a USB-C to Lightning cable with a clearly braided design rather...

Apple's iPhone 12 Event Could Happen on October 13 Based on Rumors From Mobile Operators

Wednesday September 23, 2020 11:51 am PDT by
Apple's upcoming iPhone-centric event could perhaps be held on Tuesday, October 13, according to information shared with MacRumors by an employee at a UK cellular carrier. There's no way for us to confirm the dates at this point in time nor are we sure on the credibility of the source, but even without a rumor, Tuesday, October 13 is a good guess based on Apple's historic launch timelines, ...

New Version of Microsoft Office Coming Next Year That Won't Require a Subscription

Thursday September 24, 2020 1:53 am PDT by
Microsoft will next year offer a new perpetual release of Microsoft Office for Mac and Windows that doesn't require a subscription to use, according to the software giant (via Windows Central). "Microsoft Office will also see a new perpetual release for both Windows and Mac, in the second half of 2021," said Microsoft in a blog post announcing the next version of its Exchange server,...

Interest in iOS 14 Home Screen Ideas Helps Pinterest Break Daily Download Record

Wednesday September 23, 2020 4:37 am PDT by
Apple's introduction of widgets on the Home Screen in iOS 14 has driven a surge in interest among users looking to customize their iPhone, and that has reportedly had a knock-on effect for Pinterest, whose iOS app has seen record downloads as users flock to its content seeking design inspiration. As reported by TechCrunch, App Store intelligence firm Apptopia was first to note the impact of ...

'iPhone 12 mini' Name Reappears in Leaked Apple iPhone 12 Case Stickers

Friday September 25, 2020 1:58 am PDT by
Earlier this week a proven leaker claimed that the iPhone 12 lineup would be named "iPhone 12 mini," "iPhone 12," "iPhone 12 Pro," and "iPhone 12 Pro Max," and today the same nomenclature has appeared again in a photo depicting alleged stickers from unreleased Silicone iPhone cases originating from Apple's international distribution center in Ireland. The photo shows three stickers with the...

Apple Releases iOS 14.0.1 With Fix for Bug That Resets Default Apps After Rebooting

Thursday September 24, 2020 10:12 am PDT by
Apple today released iOS 14.0.1, the first update to the iOS 14 operating system that was released on September 16. Today's update is a bug fix update addressing issues that weren't able to be fixed in the initial iOS 14 launch. The iOS 14.0.1 update is available on all eligible devices over-the-air in the Settings app. To access the new software, go to Settings > General > Software Update. ...

Apple Emphasizes That Solo Loop May Increase in Length Over Time, Updates Sizing Guide With More Specific Instructions

Wednesday September 23, 2020 8:26 am PDT by
Apple on Tuesday updated one of its support documents to emphasize that the new silicone rubber Solo Loop for the Apple Watch may increase in length over time, as mentioned in fine print at the bottom of the Solo Loop product page. Apple has also updated its printable Solo Loop sizing guide with more specific instructions, as noted by 9to5Mac's Michael Steeber. The guide now advises users to ...

iOS 14 Widgets Offer iPhone Users Creative Home Screen Ideas

Sunday September 20, 2020 8:43 pm PDT by
Updated on September 22nd with hands on video. In iOS 14, Apple introduced ‌the concept of Home Screen‌ widgets, which provide information from apps at a glance. Widgets can be pinned to the Home Screen in various spots and sizes, allowing for many different layouts. Despite the relative lack of...

Kuo: Mini-LED Displays to Debut in Apple's Next iPad Pro

Tuesday September 22, 2020 11:45 pm PDT by
Following his report earlier this week indicating that Apple will be accelerating adoption of mini-LED displays in its iPad and Mac notebook lineups thanks to better than expected development from potential secondary supplier Sanan Optoelectronics, analyst Ming-Chi has released a new report today sharing a bit more perspective on the mini-LED display market as it relates to Apple. Kuo says...