Intel proudly announces on its website that it’s in the second half of 2019, that the company’s first 5G modem should be made available to manufacturers. The XMM 8160 modem will offer speeds of up to 6 Gbps (750 MB/s), which will be up to six times faster than the best-performing 4G LTE modems on the market today.
The model will of course be compatible with current 2G, 3G and 4G networks. If an availability next year can give hope for adoption on iPhone models to be presented next September, Intel said that the first products being equipped are not expected before the start of 2020.
Intel XMM 8160
Intel provides some technical details of the XMM 8160. It says it offers simultaneous connectivity (EN-DC) for LTE and 5G. The modem’s technology can support new millimetre wave (mmWave) spectrum as well as sub 6GHz 5G NR support (including FDD and TDD bands from 600MHz to 6GHz). Intel reminds us that the move to mmWave and mid-band spectrum “addresses the enormous need for more bandwidth for users, devices and connected machines”.
Intel’s plans for 5G seem to coincide with the rumors that Apple will introduce the first 5G capable iPhones in 2020. As a reminder, Intel recently became Apple’s sole supplier of modems for the 2018 iPhones, which makes Apple reliant on Intel’s technology for the time being.