With 5G expected to start rolling out by the end of the year, many companies are trying to push the technology in hopes of being the first to launch a 5G smartphone. OnePlus has expressed such ambitions, with other companies such as Huawei also expressing a similar intent to launch a 5G smartphone in 2019.
However as far as Apple is concerned, it seems that if you were hoping for 2019’s iPhone to support 5G, you might be disappointed because according to a report from Fast Company, a source has told the publication that a 5G iPhone might only arrive in 2020. The report claims that Apple intends to use Intel’s 8161 5G modem in their iPhones, with Intel reportedly aiming to fabricate the modem using the 10nm process.
It is said that should Intel successfully manage to produce 10nm modems, they could end up being the sole supplier of 5G modems to Apple. The process is also expected to increase transistor density that will improve on its speed and efficiency, a problem faced by Intel’s 8060 modem which apparently is facing heat dissipation issues that could affect battery life.
The report goes on to add that should Intel fail to successfully manufacture its 5G modems, Apple could potentially turn to MediaTek, but apparently this is a “distant” plan B as it is believed that Apple and Intel could potentially have enough time to solve any problems that crop up.
Apple has typically been seen as being “slow” in terms of adopting new technology, such as 4G in which Apple took a while before they launched an iPhone with 4G support, so it’s not surprising that the company could be adopting a similar cautious approach with 5G.