18 January 2023
The rumors of Apple working on custom modems are nothing new as they have been making rounds for a long time. The latest report from Bloomberg suggests Apple has set plans for releasing a 5G modem by 2024. It is further said to be working on an all-in-one chip with WiFi, Bluetooth, and cellular capabilities.
The Cupertino-based tech giant wants to reduce its dependency on Qualcomm which has been supplying modems for iPhones. It is also responsible for providing 5G modems you get on compatible iPhone and iPad models. The move to develop a custom 5G modem will not only reduce its reliance on a third-party supplier but will also help it save money. It was initially rumored to start using the custom modem in 2023 but the plan has now been pushed back to 2024.
Its roadmap further includes an all-in-one chip that will deliver cellular, Bluetooth, and WiFi connectivity. The decision will allow the company to reduce its dependency on Broadcom. Its plan is to release a chip with only Bluetooth and WiFi support in 2025. It will be followed by an improved version featuring additional cellular connectivity but its release timeline has not been specified.
Apple has already been using custom A-series chipsets for iPhone and iPad for over a decade now. It recently switched to custom M-series processors for MacBooks, iMac, and select iPad models. It is clear that Apple prefers to have control over various aspects of device manufacturing. Even though development plans are underway, it will take some time before these chips actually make their way to the market.