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Apple's in-house modem project won't be ready until late 2025

iPhone 15 Pro Max has a Qualcomm modem

Development of an in-house modem at Apple has hit multiple snags, with the latest delay pushing development further into 2025 or later.

Apple's modem provider is Qualcomm, and the two companies have had a rocky history with legal issues and competition. Apple reportedly was aiming for an early 2025 release for an in-house modem, but that project keeps hitting snags.

According to a report from Bloomberg, Apple is going to miss it's spring 2025 release window. People familiar with the matter say Apple could postpone the release until late 2025 or early 2026.

Apple recently extended its contract with Qualcomm to 2026. That contract extension came as a surprise considering Qualcomm's CEO expected Apple would have its in-house modem ready in 2024.

Designing a modem is no small feat. It requires a chip that can efficiently connect to cellular networks around the world and provide competitive speeds.

Previous reports said Apple's modem development was three years behind Qualcomm's.

Apple is determined to develop its own modem because it likes having control of the entire hardware and software stack. However, unlike ditching Intel for Apple Silicon, Qualcomm is a leader in the space and will be difficult to surpass, let alone match.

The iPhone SE 4 was initially rumored to be a test bed for the in-house modem, but that project was scrapped. With these latest delays, it isn't clear if Apple will ever release a modem, but work on the project will continue even if it never sees the light of day.