Although 5G is a new and half baked technology still many mobile manufacturers are releasing 5G capable handset. Apple is also no behind. Apple is expected to release a number of iPhone this and atleast one of them will be 5G capable. Earlier it was reported that Apple will use Qualcomm 5G modem for their iPhone. But the latest report from Fast Company suggests that Apple is working its own version of the 5G modem.
Last year Apple and Qualcomm settled their years-long legal battle in the vision of future 5G iPhone. Apple also used Qualcomm’s QTM 525 millimeter-wave antenna in its upcoming iPhone design. Then why this sudden move? Well according to an anonymous source, “Apple balked at the QTM 525 millimeter-wave antenna module offered to it by Qualcomm because it doesn’t fit into the sleek industrial design Apple wants for the new phone”.
But even as Apple is working on its new antenna, it is working on another design, one of which will possibly also use Qualcomm’s QTM 525 modem.
The reports suggest that Apple’s 5G iPhone would use a phased array antenna that uses two parts to form a signal beam. This beam would be able to be steered electronically. But creating a design such as this would be quite challenging as 5G antenna for mmWave are more difficult to design due to the higher frequencies, there are tighter tolerances for manufacturing.
This is not the first time when Apple is releasing an iPhone with its own antenna. In 2012 they released iPhone 4 with their own antenna but the implementation worst than expected. Apple may this time avoid such incidents because of their acquisition of Intel’s modem business. This allowed Apple to take the groundwork that Intel had already done. Still, it will not be an easy job to design a 5G modem.