Qualcomm and Iridium end satellite connectivity collaboration - STORE ELECTRONIC

Qualcomm and Iridium end satellite connectivity collaboration


Qualcomm has terminated its collaboration with satellite communications company Iridium, as reported by CNBC. The partnership aimed to offer satellite-to-phone services, but faced a setback as smartphone manufacturers did not integrate the technology into their devices.

Despite successfully developing and demonstrating the technology, Qualcomm decided to end the agreement due to the lack of adoption by smartphone makers. The company emphasized that smartphone manufacturers prefer standards-based solutions for satellite-to-phone connectivity.

Satellite to phone partnership: Qualcomm and Iridium

This move occurs in the context of a growing interest among major players in connecting unmodified phones directly to satellites. Various smartphone manufacturers, service providers, and satellite companies, including Apple, SpaceX, AT&T, T-Mobile, and AST SpaceMobile, are actively exploring projects in this emerging market.

In a statement, Qualcomm expressed its commitment to collaborating with Iridium on standards-based solutions while discontinuing efforts on the proprietary solution introduced earlier in the year.

Iridium acknowledged the end of the agreement with Qualcomm and highlighted that this allows the company to re-engage with other partners working on satellite-to-cell projects. Importantly, Iridium assured that the termination of the agreement does not impact its financial guidance for the full year 2023.

According to the statement reported by CNBC, Iridium CEO Matt Desch said,

While I’m disheartened that this collaboration didn’t yield immediate results, we remain optimistic about the industry’s trajectory, moving decisively toward enhanced satellite connectivity in consumer devices.

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