We’re not expecting the phone to be announced until September, but Intel has apparently already started production of the chip responsible for the iPhone X2’s network connectivity.
It’s a more interesting year for the iPhones’s network connectivity, as the ongoing legal disputes between Apple and Qualcomm have soured the relationship between the two companies.
As a result, 2018 is expected to see Intel produce the majority of the iPhone’s modem chips, reports The Inquirer, as it takes market share from Qualcomm.
This won’t have too much of an impact on us in the UK, but it’s more relevant for the US because of the split between CDMA and GSM connectivity between carriers. Traditionally, Qualcomm’s chips have provided connectivity to CDMA networks, while Intel’s have allowed access to GSM.
A CDMA vs GSM rivalry
However, this year’s Intel XMM 7560 chip will be the first to offer CDMA support, meaning the same handset should work across all major US networks.
Specs wise the modem chip is packing support for download speeds of up to 1Gbps and can connect to all 35 LTE bands.
Hopefully this will allow Intel’s chips to close the gap with Qualcomm. A test conducted last year suggested that there’s a significant speed difference between the two chips, with Qualcomm’s coming out on top.
Closing this gap will be important if Intel’s chip ends up powering the majority of handsets.
Later, in 2019, Intel is expected to produce the XMM 800 series of chips, which will be the company’s first to support 5G, the next generation of mobile phone connectivity.
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