Apple-Designed 5G Modem Said to Debut in All 2023 iPhone Models

Mar 11, 2021 6:35 am PST by Joe Rossignol

Apple's custom-designed 5G cellular modem will likely debut in all 2023 iPhone models, according to Barclays analysts Blayne Curtis and Thomas O'Malley. In a supplier-focused research note shared with MacRumors, the analysts said chipmakers Qorvo and Broadcom should be among the companies that benefit from the shift to Apple's in-house solution.


Fast Company's Mark Sullivan and Bloomberg's Mark Gurman are among several sources who have reported that Apple is working on its own modem for future iPhones. Apple reportedly began development of the modem in 2020, after acquiring the majority of Intel's smartphone modem business a year earlier to bolster its efforts. Barclays previously said the modem will support both sub-6GHz and mmWave bands of 5G, as to be expected.

Apple currently uses Qualcomm modems, including the Snapdragon X55 modem in iPhone 12 models. In 2019, a legal settlement between Apple and Qualcomm revealed that Apple will likely use the Snapdragon X60 modem in 2021 iPhones, followed by the Snapdragon X65 modem in 2022 iPhones. The roadmap did mention the possibility of 2023 iPhones using an unannounced Snapdragon X70 modem, but this now appears less likely.

Apple's modem would likely be manufactured by its longtime chipmaking partner TSMC.

Tags: Barclays, 5G

Top Rated Comments

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7 months ago

Who cares when T mobile now gives me fake 5g ?
T-Mobile doesn't give you fake 5G. They are actually the only one in the US that gives you actual 5G not DSS with Standalone 5G coming with iOS 14.5.
Score: 26 Votes
7 months ago

Why would it take them so long? That's two years ?
I imagine it's pretty complex technology that will be bedevilled by an extraordinary amount of required testing and regulatory requirements. That will eat into a lot of time.
Rating: 13 Votes
7 months ago

A Call made by two Analysts who do NOT have a Technical Background !

Clearly they are Dumb & Dumber !
So what are your qualifications?
Rating: 11 Votes
7 months ago

Why would it take them so long? That's two years ?
modems are extremely complex, 3 year is not a long time ...
Rating: 10 Votes
7 months ago
Good for Apple. Vertical integration and less reliance on third parties is likely a good call here. If the modem performs well, it may push Qualcomm and others to innovate more, similar to the effect of the M1 chip. The more companies competing, the better for consumers.
Rating: 10 Votes
7 months ago
Who cares when T mobile now gives me fake 5g ?
Rating: 9 Votes

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