Back on April 26th, Patently Apple posted a report titled "Prior to the Apple-Qualcomm Deal, Apple was rumored to be in talks to Acquire Intel's 5G Modem Division." At the time CNBC had learned that Apple may have been in talks with Intel to acquire their 5G modem division so that they would be able to control the direction of their future 5G modem architecture, and more importantly, its scheduling.
Late this afternoon we learned from a report posted by The Information that Apple remains in talks to buy a key part of Intel’s smartphone modem business in Germany.
The talks come as Intel considers selling its struggling modem business in pieces. Apple is focusing on one of the strongest pieces of the modem business. While Intel’s modem group is spread across the world, its foundation is in Germany, where the chip maker Infineon is based. Any deal with Intel for the business would likely send hundreds of modem engineers to Apple.
The discussions between the two companies, which have been ongoing since last year, could still fall through.
Many former senior executives at Intel, who came to the company through the Infineon deal, now work at Apple, including Bernd Adler, who joined Apple in 2015, and Stefan Wolff, who joined the iPhone maker a few months ago. Mr. Wolff previously managed the Germany-based modem operations for Intel.
While The Information's report is interesting, we also know that Apple signed a six year deal for modems with Qualcomm with the option of an additional two years. That's a long way down the road. If the news breaks of Apple making a formal acquisition of Infineon or the like, we'll continue with this story.
If you're interested in hearing more, check out the full report by The Information here.
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