The new iPhone 11 and iPhone 11 Pro come equipped with LTE modems exclusively from Intel.
The confirmation from PCMag comes as a surprise considering Apple is now partnering up with Qualcomm, but their deal reportedly came too late in the iPhone 11’s development cycle to be included.
According to the report, there is a difference between menu configurations on Intel- and Qualcomm-based devices and this is how the publication discovered the new handsets have Intel modems.
“[PC Mag] figured this out because the field test menus on Intel-based and Qualcomm-based iPhones have different menu items, and the menu items have stayed consistent through the generations,” reads the report. “According to Apple, there is one model of each of the iPhone 11, 11 Pro, and 11 Pro Max sold in the US.”
It’s speculated that the new iPhone models are hiding an Intel XMM 7660 modems, the latest Intel made before it announced the shutdown of its 5G smartphone modem business.
PCMag’s proofs aren’t exactly conclusive but without a full teardown, it might be the only one we can get for now.
Those following the legal drama between Apple and Qualcomm might not be that surprised that Apple has gone with Intel. The former two reached a settlement earlier this year but it was perhaps too late for Qualcomm’s modems to be integrated into the new iPhones. We might see the return of the dual supplier strategy next year and beyond, especially when iPhones start sporting 5G capabilities.
While Qualcomm believes that its deal with Apple will last for years, Apple fans and analysts believe otherwise. With Intel’s assets, it is all too clear that Apple will be making its own LTE modems soon, booting both Intel and Qualcomm from its smartphones. Whether that will be true for 5G isn’t yet certain as Intel hasn’t exactly been at the forefront of that development, but at this point, it’s only a matter of time.