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iPhone 14 Pro and Pro Max's new SOS via Satellite feature is powered by a Snapdragon X65 modem from Qualcomm

A 14 Pro Max board. (Source: iFixit)
A 14 Pro Max board. (Source: iFixit)
iFixit has reportedly released a preview of its iPhone 14 Pro Max teardown that reveals how the new top-end mobile flagship's inaugural emergency satellite access works. It apparently involves a component found in many other 5G devices, some of which are not even from Apple. The Snapdragon X65 is a 2021 modem also capable of delivering 5G connectivity.

iFixit's upcoming teardown of the iPhone 14 Pro Max reportedly reveals that the new Apple flagship incorporates a Qualcomm Snapdragon X65 modem for its 5G mobile data needs - and more besides. The device-repair specialists now assert that it is also a part of what makes it a smartphone capable of communicating through satellites for the first time ever.

The Snapdragon X65 is also found in other devices, and can even be had as a wireless card for 5G-capable laptops these days. However, it is only in the 14 Pro Max (and, presumably, the 14 Pro) in which it also supports the new Emergency SOS feature that allows it to act as a satellite phone should the user find it necessary.

iFixit will not publish the teardown in question for another few days, yet has reportedly confirmed its findings to Reuters in advance.

Apple has reportedly officially corroborated the claims to some extent, although it maintains that the X65 was only capable of unlocking the "2.4 GHz n53 band" necessary for its new use-case through "additional proprietary hardware and software" it has developed for the iPhone 14 Pro series.

Nevertheless, this breakthrough may imply that copycat versions from other OEMs, which have also been integrating 5G modems for years, just might be on the way, pushing satellite-compatible smartphones into the mainstream all the sooner in the future.

Then again, in the meantime, Apple has yet to switch the service on via software, and may not expand Emergency SOS via Satellite to locations outside the US and Canada until much later.

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> Expert Reviews and News on Laptops, Smartphones and Tech Innovations > News > News Archive > Newsarchive 2022 09 > iPhone 14 Pro and Pro Max' new SOS via Satellite feature is powered by a Snapdragon X65 modem from Qualcomm
Deirdre O'Donnell, 2022-09-19 (Update: 2022-09-20)