Rumor: Apple Might Buy Intel’s 5G Modem Division

From : Once upon a time (2018), Intel and Apple were the best of friends contractually obligated to say nice things about each other from public stages as part of a deal in which Apple would use Intel’s 5G modem in its future products and Intel would have a major customer with which to justify aggressively investing in 5G modems. The deal fell through when Intel failed to meet certain deadlines or achieve Apple’s target metrics. The details are uncertain. What we do know is that Apple paid Qualcomm $4.5B to settle the case and obtain a license for Qualcomm’s 5G modem technology, and Intel announced it was shutting its modem business and R&D down as a result.

Now, there’s a rumor that Apple might actually want to buy Intel’s modem division in the first place, relieving Chipzilla of the German design unit it acquired when it bought Infineon. Intel, meanwhile, is potentially looking for a buyer. The company has been quoted as saying: “We have hired outside advisors to help us assess strategic options for our wireless 5G phone business. We have created value both in our portfolio of wireless modem products and in our intellectual property.” Some Infineon engineers and executives are now Apple employees, which may make the entire deal more likely.

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