Intel fans were left disappointed as Apple decided to continue using Qualcomm modems for its new phone, the iPhone SE. Qualcomm is Apple’s old supplier, and for this decision, the tech giant has put to rest all expectations of shifting to a new one.
Why not Intel?
According to Apple, the modems it has used in its latest iPhone provide LTE speeds in excess of 50% more than the X5 modem it used in the iPhone 5S. The modem used in the iPhone SE should give download speeds of up to 225 MPs, if we take Apple’s statement into consideration. This makes Qualcomm’s X7 modem the likely candidate since it offers download speeds of 300 MPs and upload speeds of 50 MPs, says The Country Caller.
The idea of Apple choosing modems for its devices from two different manufacturers seemed uncharacteristic from the beginning. For one reason, the company makes just one version of each of its products with maximal hardware to software optimization, the report says. Also there’s the fact that Qualcomm holds the leading position in wireless mobile technology, and Apple would not want to go for a sub-par offering just to save some money.
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Sticking with the old supplier
Apple hosted an event on March 21 for the unveiling of the iPhone SE. The news of Apple using only Qualcomm for its models came as a surprise to Wall Street analysts, who were expecting Apple to diversify its suppliers with a chunk of its modem business going into Intel’s hands.
Previously, reports suggested that Intel was ramping its production line. With this news, some analysts came up with the suggestion that Apple, which has been meeting most of its demand for modems from Qualcomm, could diversify and use Intel modems for a fraction of its devices.
Nevertheless, it does not mean that all hopes for Intel are dead. Though Apple prefers sticking to one supplier, it has the option of leveraging competition to drive down costs. Apple would be able to secure better deals if it opts to diversify its supply chain.