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Apple buys Intel’s smartphone modem division for $1 billion

Posted at 1:28 PM, Jul 25, 2019
and last updated 2019-07-25 16:28:51-04

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Apple is paying Intel $1 billion for the chip maker’s smartphone modem division in a deal driven by the upcoming transition to the next generation of wireless technology.

The agreement announced Thursday comes three months after Apple ended a long-running dispute with one of Intel’s rivals, Qualcomm, to ensure it would have a pipeline of chips it needs for future iPhones to work on ultrafast wireless networks known as 5G.

That truce prompted Intel to abandon its attempts to make chips for 5G modems, effectively putting that part of business up for grabs.

Apple’s purchase of Intel’s smartphone modem patents and other technology could bolster its attempt to build its own line 5G chips and lessen its dependence on Qualcomm. Apple’s licensing deal with Qualcomm expires in April 2025.