Gurman: Apple is turning more of its attention to 6G R&D

Gurman: Apple is turning more of its attention to 6G R&D

IT Home reported on December 4 that Bloomberg's Mark Gurman published the latest issue of "Power On" on Sunday local time, talking about Apple's R&D plan for 6G technology. At the same time, he bluntly stated in his X tweet, "Forget Apple's 5G modem, even though it hasn't been canceled yet." Apple's 6G research is heating up. ”

Gurman: Apple is turning more of its attention to 6G R&D

According to Gurman, Apple is turning more attention to 6G while developing 5G cellular modems. At the same time, he analyzed the reasons that led to the "mess" of Apple's modem chip-related work:

Apple is rushing to finish working on a modem so that it doesn't need to re-contract with Qualcomm and buy components (again). The two companies have been at odds for years, and Apple really doesn't want to rely on Qualcomm for this important part of the iPhone. At the same time, further delay would be seen as an admission of defeat.

The development of modems is extremely difficult and requires testing on a global scale. At the same time, the modem is also an indispensable part of operating a mobile phone. If Apple's modem doesn't work well after it hits the market, it will be the biggest "black eyes" of Cook's tenure as CEO.

Apple has adopted such a strategy because the introduction of modems within the company will give Apple more control over the technology and potentially bring economic benefits. But unlike some of Apple's own chips (M-series and A-series), modems are unlikely to deliver significant performance gains. This can create even more challenges for marketing.

Gurman: Apple is turning more of its attention to 6G R&D

Gurman also said that while working on the first 5G modem, Apple is also hiring engineers to develop 6G. Apple's interest in this technology can be traced back to 2021. But now, a very specific job posting has appeared on Apple's official website:

As a cellular platform architect, you'll drive and coordinate the design and modeling of 6G reference architectures.

A suitable set of prototype implementations and reference architecture models needs to be developed to evaluate candidate technologies and use cases.

In this role, you will plan, drive, and actively participate in these modeling and prototyping activities.

You'll work cross-functionally with R&D teams to propose, plan, and implement simulations and experiments to evaluate 6G technology candidates!

However, 6G-related standards are not expected to be available until 2030 at the earliest.

According to a previous report by IT House, the operator of the news aggregator account "yeux1122" on the blog of the South Korean portal Naver said that supply chain sources related to Apple's 5G modem division revealed that the company's attempts to independently develop modems have so far been unsuccessful, and Apple is closing the investment project that has lasted for many years.

It's unclear whether this report is true, but the Wall Street Journal reported in September that Apple's plans to develop its own modem chip have encountered a number of difficulties, including unrealistic goals, insufficient understanding of the challenges involved, and an unusable prototype.

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