Don’t count on a 5G iPhone this year. Intel’s 5G modems will come in 2020

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Angela Lang/CNET
Intel won’t have 5G modem chips in phones until 2020, company executives said Friday, according to Reuters. That could mean Apple, which uses Intel modems, might not have a 5G phone until after some of its rivals.

Sample 5G modem chips will go out to customers this year, but there likely won’t be consumer products available until 2020, said Sandra Rivera, who heads up Intel’s 5G strategy, according to the report. She added that 5G products that aren’t geared toward consumers, such as networking gear, will be available later this year, according to Reuters. Intel confirmed the report.

It’s not clear if this means there won’t be an iPhone with 5G this year, though Apple appears to be in no rush to include the technology.

Several major companies are scrambling to incorporate 5G, from carriers like Verizon and Sprint to phone makers like LG and Samsung. Qualcomm is supplying the modems that’ll go in 5G phones slated to arrive this year. Apple stopped using Qualcomm modems after a legal dispute with the chipmaker.

Apple didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.

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