At the moment Apple’s A-series of chipsets in their iOS devices are based on ARM’s architecture which is currently the dominating design for mobile devices, although Intel has been trying to nab themselves a slice of that pie. In fact last year Intel publicly stated that they are hoping to lure Apple away from Qualcomm for some of its mobile components, and it looks like they might have succeeded.
According to a report from VentureBeat (via MacRumors), word on the street has it that Intel might have managed to secure themselves a deal with Apple for the Cupertino company’s 2016 iPhone (presumably the iPhone 7). The company is expected to provide Apple with LTE modems in the form of the 7360 chip which is capable of 450Mbps down and will support 29 LTE bands.
Now here’s where it gets a bit conflicted. VentureBeat claims that the Intel chip might only be used in some iPhone models, particularly those destined for Asia and other emerging markets. It doesn’t really seem like Apple to differentiate their products that way which is why analyst Ben Bajarin claims that Apple will instead be making the switch universal, as opposed to using different chipsets for different markets.
Undoubtedly the switch to Intel could be a huge loss for Qualcomm who has been steadily providing Apple with modem chips for years now. It remains to be seen how Intel’s chips will perform compared to Qualcomm as the chips are only expected to begin shipping to manufacturers in the second half of 2015.