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Apple’s first 5G iPhone rumoured to debut in 2019 with this new Intel chip

We’re all looking ahead to the launch of the iPhone 11 next, but will the new 2019 iPhone line-up offer 5G? That’s the big question – and recent news surrounding the plans of Apple’s new modem chip manufacturer Intel throw such hopes into doubt.

That’s because Intel has just revealed its 5G modem roadmap, which sees the company’s next-gen XMM 8160 chip releasing to its OEM partners in late-2019 ahead of device launches in 2020.

This quietly represents big news in the development of 5G phones, as while most big Android manufacturers – think Samsung, Sony, HTC, LG, OnePlus and more – are understood to be utilising Qualcomm’s Snapdragon X50 modem, Intel recently secured Apple as its headline handset partner and produced the chips found in this year’s iPhone XS and iPhone XR phones.

The Snapdragon X50, by way of reference, has been confirmed as a 5G-ready chip – but if the Intel XMM 8160 isn’t good-to-go for devices until 2020, that could leave Apple lagging behind its competitors.

Alternatively, it could mean that Apple’s 2019 iPhone flagship is the first handset to pack an Intel 5G modem, bringing it more in line with the market next year.

Intel adds that its XMM 8160 chip will be offer support for older 4G, 3G and even 2G connectivity, but is being built to facilitate 5G use cases across mobile phones, PCs, and broadband hubs with proposed speeds of up to 6Gbps.

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It’s safe to say that 2019 is shaping up to be a hugely interesting annum in the mobile world – and how Intel’s 5G modem roadmap impacts the space will be a matter of keen interest for consumers and industry watchers alike.

When do you think we’ll see the first 5G iPhone launched? Let us know on Twitter @TrustedReviews.

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