Apple’s 2018 iPhones could come with dual SIM capabilities, gigabit LTE technology

By Digit NewsDesk | Published on 22 Nov 2017
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KGI Securities' analyst, Ming-Chi Kuo says that at least one of the iPhone models launching next year will come with dual-SIM capabilities, with dual standby support and feature new chips by Intel and Qualcomm.

Apple’s 2018 iPhones could come with dual SIM capabilities, gigabit LTE technology

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All of the Apple iPhones till now have sported a single SIM slot, but according to Macrumors, via a report by Ming-Chi Kuo from KGI Securities, the Cupertino based company’s 2018 iPhones could sport dual-SIM capabilities. The analyst said in his latest report that the upcoming iPhone will feature Intel's XMM 7560 and Qualcomm's Snapdragon X20 modems, which will enable faster LTE transmission speeds and support for dual SIM. Kuo explained that the antenna design on the upcoming iPhones will be a key factor in determining the boost in LTE speeds.

Kuo states that the new chips by Intel and Snapdragon will support 4x4 MIMO technology as compared to only 2x2 MIMO on the latest iPhone models. He also predicts that Intel will supply 70 to 80 percent or even more of the baseband chips to Apple. Kuo’s latest research note says, “New baseband chips from Intel & Qualcomm will significantly boost transmission speed of new 2H18 iPhone models thanks to supporting 4x4 MIMO antenna design: We believe that 2H18 new iPhones will upgrade baseband chips from Intel’s XMM 7480 and Qualcomm's MDM 9655 in 2H17 to Intel’s XMM 7560 and Qualcomm's SDX 20. As both new chips support 4x4 MIMO technology, compared to only 2x2 MIMO in 2H17, we anticipate LTE transmission speeds will increase significantly. We believe Intel will supply Apple with 70-80% or more of required baseband chips.”

As per the report, at least one of the upcoming iPhone models will come with dual-sim dual standby (DSDS) feature with support for LTE+LTE connections, instead of the commonly observed LTE+3G connectivity. It would allow two SIM cards to be active simultaneously on LTE networks. Kuo points out that it’s not clear if next year's iPhones will feature a dual SIM slot or would come with one SIM pre-embedded in the smartphone.

Previously, Kuo forecasted that Apple could launch three iPhones next year, two models with OLED displays and one with an LCD display. All the three smartphones are expected to feature an edge-to-edge design similar to the iPhone X.  The two iPhones sporting an OLED panel could come in 6.5-inch and 5.8-inch variants, whereas the LCD model is tipped to feature a 6.1-inch panel. All three devices could reportedly launch in the second half of next year.

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