While competing smartphones may irritate Apple for launching the non-5G iPhone as its flagship this year, the reality is that there is so little coverage that it's still almost irrelevant.
Waiting a year also allows Apple to take advantage of two upcoming 5G chip developments …
As noted by CNET has two issues with today's 5G chips.
The way smartphones enter 5G networks – at least early on – is misleading.
Phones must have a 5G chip and a compatible 5G modem to connect to the network (they are currently separate and this takes up space). And each phone model only works with specific network strips, so you can't transfer your 5G phone from one provider to another.
However, new chips are coming soon, which will combine the parts into a smaller package that can make 5G phones thinner and cheaper. And multimodal modems will mean that a phone can potentially jump networks.
By waiting longer for the technology to mature, Apple bypasses this early entanglement of who's phone works at what place when. This is just the latest example of a company breaking into the end of a glossy version of technology introduced by its Android competitors.
Samsung and Huawei have integrated 5G modems into processors planned for Android smartphones next year. Apple, of course, is creating its own Series A chips, so we won't be using one of those solutions that is offered off the shelf, but the new chips really act as a proof of concept. By the end of the iPhone manufacturer's battle with Qualcomm, it will be able to negotiate the rights to incorporate the 5G wireless chipmaker scheme into future Series A chips. In the long run, Apple may plan to bypass Qualcomm entirely and design its own 5G modem scheme.
CNET suggests that the loyalty of Apple's customers makes it easy for the Cupertino company to make similar decisions.
Although phone sales are softening for the industry as a whole, Apple has managed to keep the cult mystique of the iPhone alive and people who have waited three to four years for an upgrade will probably not wait.
The big question will be whether we will also get a 5G iPad next year. The technology will almost certainly come first for the iPhone, as Apple likes to roll out new developments in its best-selling product line, but the 5G iPad will surely be great to see soon. One report even suggested that we could see MacBooks with 5G capabilities.
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