Intel may have dropped its ambitions to make 5G smartphone modems after selling that part of its business to Apple, but the firm is still very much interested in bringing next-gen mobile data speeds to other devices it provides chips for.
Intel has announced a partnership with MediaTek pertaining to the “development, certification and support of 5G modem solutions” for laptop and desktop PCs. Under the partnership between the two firms, MediaTek will provide a 5G modem it has developed, which will be manufactured by a third-party.
From there, the 5G modem will be bundled with Intel’s Core series of processors, in laptops from Dell and HP, according to a MediaTek press release on Monday. That means we could see some household name laptop ranges with 5G chips in the very near future. Perhaps this partnership won’t bear fruit in time for the cavalcade of laptops likely to arrive at CES 2019, but not too long afterwards.
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When Intel sold its mobile modem making business to Apple for over a billion dollars earlier in this year, the company did not rule out that it would continue developing modems for PCs.
However, that isn’t the case here, with MediaTek handling the duties on Intel’s behalf. It is somewhat surprising the Taiwanese firm – known for developing tools for mid-range devices – has won out here rather than a firm like Samsung or Qualcomm, which is known for higher-end options.
“5G is poised to unleash a new level of computing and connectivity that will transform the way we interact with the world,” said Gregory Bryant, EVP and GM of Intel’s Client Computing Group.
“Intel’s partnership with MediaTek brings together industry leaders with deep engineering, system integration and connectivity expertise to deliver 5G experiences on the next generation of the world’s best PCs.”