According to Bloomberg, Apple is opening a new office for the project. The unit is based in Irvine, somewhat unusually far from Cupertino, with the company employing a few dozen employees on its first run. Of course, the location is no coincidence, with Skyworks and Broadcom offices nearby, Apple has a good chance of attracting professionals.
The source says the unit near Los Angeles specializes in various wireless radio developments. This is indicated by job advertisements at Apple, which is looking for professionals who already have experience with wireless network chips and modems.
Apple and Broadcom recently signed a two-year agreement in January 2020. As part of this, Broadcom has agreed to provide additional wireless components to Apple. The design firm had already sold radio frequency components and modules for iPhones before, so the 2020 decade was just an extension of connectivity. In December 2019, there was news that Broadcom might sell its RF wireless chip business. Analysts then spoke of Apple as a potential buyer, but no agreement has been reached since then.
The other mentioned company, Skyworks, supplies front-end radio units to Apple, which has long made up about half of its sales. Although Skyworks has managed to reduce its reliance in this direction in recent months, Apple’s move could still make a painful hole in its revenue.
Bloomberg says the opening of Apple’s new office is part of a broader strategy to expand the company’s satellite. With a location far from Cupertino, the company can also attract professionals who don’t want to live in or near Silicon Valley.