Future Macs could have built-in cellular connectivity

Apple’s push to develop more processors in-house could see it manufacture a system-on-a-chip (SoC) that integrates an in-house modem, which would eventually see the launch of Macs with built-in cellular connectivity.

This is according to Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman, who says Apple will need at least two to three more years before the chip is put in a MacBook.

Despite the Cupertino tech giant’s success with its in-house smartphone and laptop chips, it hasn’t yet reached all of its in-house goals.

“That includes moving away from Qualcomm Inc’s modem component in the iPhone, revamping Apple’s approach to displays and ushering in additional wireless chips,” said Gurman.

Regarding moving away from Qualcomm’s components, Apple is working on its own cellular modem.

“The company will then probably need two or three additional years to get that chip inside cellular versions of the Apple Watch and iPad — and the Mac, once the part is integrated into the company’s system-on-a-chip,” said Gurman.

The company is working on several other projects, including:

  • A combined Wi-Fi and Bluetooth chip to replace components from Broadcom.
  • MicroLED displays for the Apple Watch.
  • A non-invasive glucose monitoring system for the Apple Watch.
  • Custom-designed batteries for various Apple products.

Gurman says Apple is also eyeing an in-house approach for camera sensors.

“Photography has become one of the most critical selling points of its iPhones, and the technology is core to future developments in the mixed-reality and autonomous-driving industries,” he said.

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Future Macs could have built-in cellular connectivity