Earlier this week, The Wall Street Journal reported that Apple was in “advanced talks” with Intel to purchase the company’s smartphone modem chip business.
These discussions had begun prior to Apple’s eventual settlement with Qualcomm and when that happened, Intel stopped negotiating with Apple for a while but resumed talks as it considered the company the “most logical buyer”.
Now, at long last, Apple has officially announced that it has signed an agreement with Intel to acquire “the majority” of its smartphone modem business.
About 2,200 Intel employees will move onto Apple and take along with them some of the company’s intellectual property, equipment and leases. The acquisition is expected to fully close in the fourth quarter of this year after it will go through all the necessary approvals and consultations.
“This agreement enables us to focus on developing technology for the 5G network while retaining critical intellectual property and modem technology that our team has created,” Intel CEO Bob Swan said. “We have long respected Apple and we’re confident they provide the right environment for this talented team and these important assets moving forward. We’re looking forward to putting our full effort into 5G where it most closely aligns with the needs of our global customer base, including network operators, telecommunications equipment manufacturers and cloud service providers.”
Intel will still be able to develop modem for other, non-smartphone applications, including PC’s, autonomous vehicles and IoT.
As far as Apple is concerned, the company is “excited to have so many excellent engineers join our growing cellular technologies group, and know they’ll thrive in Apple’s creative and dynamic environment,” as Johny Srouji, Apple’s Senior Vice President of Hardware Technologies has said. “They, together with our significant acquisition of innovative IP, will help expedite our development on future products and allow Apple to further differentiate moving forward.”