According to the report, they are claiming that based on information provided to them by people familiar with the matter that Apple is trying to find ways to design 2018’s iPhones and iPads that will not have to rely on Qualcomm’s components. As it stands both Intel and Qualcomm provide the modems used for Apple’s iPhones, but if the report proves to be true, Apple could source exclusively from Intel or maybe even go with another company such as MediaTek.
The report further alleges that Qualcomm is withholding software that Apple needs to test LTE in future iPhone and iPad prototypes, but Qualcomm has asserted that this is not true and that Apple had already tested the chips that they might use for future iPhones. Qualcomm also adds that they are “committed to supporting Apple’s new devices”.
We suppose we’ll have to wait until 2018’s teardown to find out if Qualcomm really has been left out of the loop, but given what we’ve seen with Samsung, as much as Apple tries to find alternative suppliers, sometimes there really isn’t much choice.