Analyst: expect Intel LTE modems to find their way in up to 50% of Apple's iPhone 6S shipments1
Gus Richard, an analyst with North Capital Markets, recently stated that Intel has won orders for half of Apple's iPhone 6S and iPhone 6S Plus shipments. According to Apple Insider, this information lines up well with reports dating back in March which claimed that Apple is planning to integrate Intel's XMM 7360 LTE modem in the iPhone 6S series units that will be sold in markets around Asia and Latin America.
Although Intel dominates the processor market when it comes to traditional computing machines such as desktops, laptops, and servers, Intel's mobile arm has been reporting huge financial losses during the past years. Reports claim that Intel has been heavily subsidizing its tablet processors in an attempt to catch a foothold among entry-level tablet makers in China, although Chipzilla has been unable to compete with ARM designs, either stock or custom, which find their way in the vast majority of smartphones and tablets models.
According to Richard, this new deal with Apple will translate into a substantial revenue for Intel during 2016, one that will help alleviate some of the pain of its mobile division. The analyst estimates that Intel could generate somewhere between $750 million and $1.25 billion in revenue, which "would go a long way to reducing the mobile business losses". These are good revenue numbers, and Intel will surely welcome the cash despite the fact that company is primarily a processor designer and manufacturer, not a company that specializes in LTE modems.
If this report is accurate, chances are that Intel is currently hard at work manufacturing LTE modems for the first batch of iPhone 6S and iPhone 6S Plus shipments, as multiple reports hinted that Apple's supply chain has already started mass manufacturing components for the next iPhone generation. According to recent reports, Apple will unveil the iPhone 6S generation on September 9, with commercial availability estimated to arrive later in the month. While the iPhone 6S and the iPhone 6S Plus are a lock for this fall, it remains to be seen if the often-rumored iPhone 6C will see an unveiling next month along the two premium smartphones.