To keep iPhone prices from rising in the 5G era, Apple is changing up the battery technology in the new models
The analyst says that Apple is making the change in order to help cover the additional costs of building 5G support into the iPhone. Upgrading an iPhone to receive sub-6GHz 5G signals costs Apple an extra $75 to $85 per unit Kuo says; adding the components necessary for the device to connect with super zippy mmWave 5G spectrum tacks on an additional $125 to $135 to the costs of building the product. The overall effect of changing the battery technology money-wise will be to keep pricing stable as the iPhone moves into the 5G era.
Apple will also drop the second-generation battery technology it employs on the wireless Bluetooth AirPods, according to Kuo. He says that the current AirPods battery system, which relies on a printed circuit board (PCB), will be replaced by a system-in-package (SiP) design starting with the third-gen AirPods. SiP uses a number of integrated circuits placed inside one or more chips to replace entire systems. The next generation of AirPods is expected to drop in the first half of next year. The new battery system will drop the average unit cost of the wearable in-ear accessory by 25% to 35% starting in the second half of this year.