Apple says it wished to make use of Qualcomm modems within the iPhone XS, XS Max, and XR — however that Qualcomm refused to promote them after Apple sued over its licensing practices. “In the long run they’d not help us or promote us chips,” Apple’s chief working officer Jeff Williams revealed at present throughout his testimony to the US Federal Commerce Fee, as spotted by CNET. Apple had to use Intel’s LTE chips instead.
Qualcomm is currently on trial, accused of partaking in monopolistic practices together with charging unusually excessive royalty charges, refusing to license patents to different chipmakers, and promising offers to prospects like Apple in the event that they completely used Qualcomm chips.
Whereas it initially appeared that Apple had shifted to completely utilizing Intel modems out of some mixture of spite and aggressive causes, Apple stated within the courtroom that wasn’t the case. In keeping with Williams, Apple initially deliberate to separate its newest modem order between Qualcomm and Intel. It solely turned to Intel to provide all of the modems after Qualcomm refused to promote.
The dependency on Intel may additionally damage Apple’s possibilities of bringing a 5G iPhone shortly to market, as Intel’s 5G chips aren’t anticipated till 2020. Intel’s LTE modems are identified to be slower than Qualcomm’s, too. Again when Apple was sourcing each Qualcomm and Intel modems for its telephones on the similar time, the corporate needed to cap the speeds on Qualcomm modems in order that one iPhone wouldn’t have sooner speeds than one other.
Apple additionally revealed the worth it’s been paying for Qualcomm modems: $7.50 per system, says Williams. That’s apparently 5 occasions greater than what Apple wished to pay — simply $1.50 per system. Nonetheless, Williams stated, “We wanted their chip provide. If we tried to pursue them legally, we wouldn’t have entry to the chips. We didn’t have a whole lot of choices.”
The battle began in 2017 when Apple sued Qualcomm for unfair licensing phrases. Qualcomm then countersued, saying that Apple was infringing on its patents and sharing information with Intel. As of October 2018, Qualcomm stated that Apple owes it $7 billion in royalty funds. Since then, Qualcomm has taken the struggle to worldwide courts in Germany and China, efficiently successful bans on older iPhones being bought in both nation. Apple needed to pull iPhone 7 and iPhone 8 models in Germany and problem a software program replace to iPhones in China to circumvent a ban on most iPhones besides the most recent ones.