August 22, 2017
Big changes could be afoot with Apple’s next generation Watch.
Rumor has it that the next release of the company’s wrist-based computer will be able to use its LTE cellular connection for data only – not phone calls. However, real-time interactions could instead be supported via services like Facetime and Skype, reports indicate.
There is also speculation that Qualcomm, rather than Intel, may be providing the baseband chip for this personal device. Qualcomm, sources note, has a smaller and lower power solution on this front.
Reports about these two likely possibilities stem from comments by KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo. He’s been referred to in press reports as “The Most Accurate Apple Analyst in the World” based on his past accuracy in predicting details about future Apple products.
Kuo reportedly said that supporting voice calls using VoIP services like the ones mentioned above would enable Apple to drop its 3G antenna design and implement an eSIM as opposed to a physical SIM card.
As for Kuo’s prediction about Apple employing Qualcomm technology in its Watch, that’s noteworthy in light of at least two factors.
One is that Qualcomm is in a patent dispute with Apple at the moment. Qualcomm recently asked U.S. regulators to ban iPhone imports, saying Apple has infringed on six of its patents, including technology that improves battery life.
Also, Mark Gurman of Bloomberg News has said that the next Apple Watch will employ Intel technology.
It’s likely we’ll all find out who is correct in short order. Expectations are that Apple will unveil its next Apple Watch (along with new iPhones) next month.
Global wearables shipments reached 22 million units in the first quarter of this year. The quarter was also notable in that Apple, at 16 percent marketshare, displaced Fitbit as the leader in this product category.
Edited by Maurice Nagle