Intel’s time in the mobile 5G business may be running out but it could be a boost for Apple.
According to the Wall Street Journal, the iPhone maker is considering buying Intel’s smartphone modem business for no less than $1 billion, with the deal wrapped up as soon as next week.
When Apple announced, back in April, that it would buy 5G modems for its devices from the American tech giant Qualcomm, Intel proclaimed it would be folding its cards and dropping out of the 5G game altogether.
At the time, the company’s CEO Bob Swan said that without Apple as a customer, it simply “didn’t see a path” for the business.
So it decided to find a buyer for the unprofitable branch and now we understand that Apple could be the one to buy it out.
For The Verge, the deal “makes a lot of sense” for Apple.
“Prior to Apple and Qualcomm settling, Intel became the sole third-party modem provider for the 2018 models of the iPhone. And Apple has long been Intel’s only major customer for modems — nearly every other major Android phone relies on either Qualcomm or in-house solutions,” it says.
Despite its deal with Qualcomm, Apple allegedly was working on developing its own modems, in parallel. With Intel on board, it could achieve that milestone that much faster.