Many manufacturers in the market have started rolling out 5G devices for some regions. Apple’s competitors including Oneplus, Samsung, and Huawei have already released 5G variants of their flagship devices. The big question remains – is Apple planning to release a 5G Phone in 2020?
Apple could have already released a 5G enabled iPhone in 2019 but it did not. The latest lineup of iPhones – the iPhone 11, iPhone 11 Pro and the iPhone 11 Pro Max did not have 5G variants. The reason for this is that Apple is currently amidst a legal battle with the chip manufacturing company Qualcomm which prohibits Apple from releasing a 5G capable phone in 2019.
Challenges of 5G Enabled Phones
If Apple plans to release a 5G phone in the coming year, it will have to overcome these problems, as reported by CNET: –
5G enabled phones require a 5G capable chip as well as a separate modem with 5G capability. The current technology for 5G requires these two chips to be separate; this would take up more space inside the phone. Also, every phone works with a single network band so you cannot change carriers for your phone.
New kinds of 5G chips are in development which will combine both the chips to make a more compact 5G system. There are also multimodal 5G chips in development which means that phones will be able to switch between carriers.
Apple’s current strategy is to wait for the 5G technology to fully develop before implementing it into its phones. This will save them the work required to integrate the extra chips into their devices. Apple usually waits for technology to be completely developed before implementing it into their products. That’s the case with the in-display fingerprint which is rumored to be a feature in the 5G iPhone.
The Legal Battle
The 5G technology in iPhones will set a new standard in mobile internet speeds as people will be able to enjoy higher internet speeds in their mobile connection without connecting to a WiFi. But Apple cannot release a 5G enabled phone in 2019 due to their legal battle with Qualcomm.
Apple is partnering with Intel to make their own 5G chip but they already have a contract with Qualcomm. So at least the first of the 5G enabled phones will feature a 5G chip from Qualcomm but later editions will feature Apple’s native 5G chip.
There are rumors about Apple releasing a 5G Macbook Pro next year along with the 5G iPad but there is no official confirmation from Apple yet.