With the iPhone 13 release getting closer and closer, speculation is heating up about the features of the new phone. The latest comes from analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, who states in an investor’s note that the iPhone 13 could have low earth orbit satellite connectivity, which would allow users to make phone calls when cellular coverage is unavailable.
According to Kuo (who has a record of reliable reports), the iPhone 13 will be equipped with a custom Qualcomm X60 modem that works with low earth satellites. Kuo also says that Qualcomm has been working with Globalstar to use the company’s satellite communications service.
However, it’s unclear as to how the user can get access to a satellite service. Kuo explains one scenario in which the user’s network operator has a partnership with Globalstar, and connecting to the satellites would be done through the carrier. Also, in this scenario, the user doesn’t have to sign up for another phone plan.
If the satellite feature comes to fruition, the iPhone 13 will be the first consumer-level phone with it. According to Kuo, other companies will be using Qualcomm’s X65 modem to implement low earth orbit satellite connectivity. While it’s an interesting feature, however, it’s unlikely to be one most consumers are going to use.
This reports follows another made a few days ago by Jon Prosser of Front Page Tech, who says that Apple is testing a modified Face ID system that can identify people wearing masks and glasses. Check out our iPhone 13 rumors page for more on what we could see in the new phone, which we expect to launch within the next two to three weeks.