In an interview with Qualcomm CEO Steve Mollenkopf on CNBC’s Mad Money, Jim Cramer, host of the show asked Mollenkopf for an update on the company’s ongoing legal feud with Apple.
“Can you give us a little update,” asks Cramer, “because I wanna buy an Apple 5G phone and I wannit to have Qualcomm in it.” This, of course, referring to the ongoing legal battle the two companies face: Qualcomm demanding royalties and claiming patent infringements while Apple claims that the royalties are excessive.
Qualcomm CEO: We’re ‘on the doorstep’ of a resolution with Apple from CNBC
In response, Mollenkopf says he would also like to see Qualcomm 5G in Apple phones. “The second half of this year and into next year is when we’re really on the doorstep of finding a resolution,” he explains, vaguely. This doesn’t tell us much about whether (and when) Apple will release a 5G phone and if it would have a Qualcomm modem in it or not.
Then again, Apple was late to adopt LTE when it first launched. Verizon first rolled out its LTE network back in 2010 but LTE would finally arrive to an iPhone in late-2012 on the iPhone 5. If we go off of this piece of history, we don’t see Apple adopting 5G until 2020 – the company tends to wait for these technologies to stabilize and become cheaper before incorporating them into its products.
Perhaps with its declining iPhone sales, Apple can’t afford not to be part of the 5G race. 5G will be a huge selling point next year and Apple not being a part of it could further jeopardize future sales.