The first 5G smartphones are expected to debut in 2019, however Apple is in no rush to jump on this technology train, according to a report by Fast Company. The tech giant is expected to launch their 5G iPhone in 2020, with an Intel 8161 5G modem chip installed to enable access to the cutting-edge network.
This news does not come as a complete surprise, since Apple tends to wait for new technologies to become fully developed before adding these technologies to their devices, such as occurred with 3G or LTE enabled Apple gadgets. In the meantime, Intel has fallen out of favor with Apple, since the chip manufacturer seems to be unable to solve the overheating problem with their forerunner 8060 chip. While this issue is not serious enough for Apple to approach Qualcomm and initiate discussions about 5G modem chip development for the iPhone, there have been some conversations between Apple and another chip maker MediaTek as a “plan B” option.
Nevertheless, Intel still has plenty of time to solve these problems before the proposed 5G iPhone launch date. Meanwhile, a number of Android phone manufacturers are expected to launch their 5G compatible devices at Mobile World Congress in February 2019. This list includes Huawei, Xiaomi and Oppo, all of whom will have Qualcomm’s 5G chips installed for 5G network support.