Rumor: Apple in talks to buy Intel’s modem business
For a long time, Apple (AAPL) has been rumored to be in talks with Intel (INTC) to buy the latter’s modem business. A new report from The Information, citing people briefed about the talks, stated that Intel is looking to sell its modem business in parts, and Apple is interested in the former’s German operations.
The report stated that if the talks between the two materialize, Apple would likely secure the patents and products of Intel’s German modem business. Apple reached a similar deal last year when it acquired its British supplier Dialog Semiconductor for $600 million in which it brought in some patents and 300 employees from Dialog.
What is special about Intel’s German modem business?
Intel’s modem business is spread globally, but its strongest operation is in Germany, as it entered the modem space in 2011 by acquiring German-based Infineon’s modem operations for $1.4 billion. It is no hidden fact that Apple has been working on developing its own modem chips in order to reduce its dependence on Qualcomm. It even poached employees from Intel’s and Qualcomm’s modem business.
Intel’s German modem business could give Apple’s efforts to develop its own modem a boost. However, it would take Apple a few years to get the modem technology ready for use.
Deal or no deal
Intel and Apple have been in talks over the modem business since mid-2018 when Intel’s former CEO Brian Krzanich resigned and Bob Swan took over on an interim basis. However, the Wall Street Journal reported that the talks stalled in April 2019 after Apple settled its lawsuit with its modem supplier, Qualcomm, and signed chip supply and patent license agreements.
The Information’s sources warned there is a possibility that the talks between Apple and Intel could fall through once again, leaving the companies without a deal.