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Analysts Say iPhone 13 Won’t Support Satellite Communications

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A recent report claimed that the upcoming iPhone 13 models would feature low earth orbit (LEO) satellite communication connectivity, allowing users to make calls and send messages in areas without cellular coverage. However, now some mobile analysts and communication experts have denied this speculation.

The upcoming custom chip for iPhone 13, which is expected to be able to connect with satellites, could not be able to do so, reports AppleInsider.

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According to PCMag analyst Sascha Segan, the new Qualcomm chip, made in partnership with satellite company Globalstar, does not mean that the next iPhone will be able to communicate with satellites. The chip will be able to take advantage of satellite bands that were previously assigned to satellite service.

“Qualcomm’s x65 modem supports b53/n53 but the x60 does not. However, the Qualcomm modem in the iPhones may be an x60-and-a-half. In other words, it could be an x60 + b53/n53. This does not imply talking to satellites. It’s a ground-based band G’star wants to enhance LTE,” Segan said in a tweet.

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Additionally, cybersecurity expert Robert Graham noted that iPhone 13 models are going to use the downlink satellite communication channel, which occupies the 2.4835 GHz to 2.4950 GHz band, which wouldn’t support the phone-to-satellite communication which is approved for terrestrial use.

Earlier, Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, the upcoming lineup will feature hardware that is able to connect to LEO satellites. This could allow iPhone 13 users to make calls and send messages without the need for a 4G or 5G cellular connection.

Kuo also noted that the iPhone 13 will use a customized version of the Qualcomm X60 baseband modem chip which may support communications over satellite.

A recent survey has revealed that many iPhone users want the upcoming iPhone model to be named ‘iPhone 2021’ instead of ‘iPhone 13’.

According to the survey, a total of 74 percent of respondents said they hoped “iPhone 13” will be named something else. The respondents also voted for the best potential name, with “iPhone (2021)” taking the top spot with 38 percent of the vote.

Around 26 percent thought that the “iPhone 13” was the best name and only 13 percent said that they would like to see the devices called the “iPhone 12S”.

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