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Reading into the Qualcomm dispute, I suspect it's not for performance reasons but instead shaving off features/paying licenses for hardware that they don't use.

Plus you probably don't want to be handing over large wads of cash to a SoC/baseband chip manufacturer that serves your competition in the phone space.

Yes, Qualcomm doesn't care where you buy your baseband, you still have to paid them LTE patents tax. And once anyone doing calculation that making baseband themselves is not worth the hassle when the resulting chips is inferior to Qualcomm offering.

So Apple wanted to make, my guess a LTE only 4G Baseband, no 2G, 3G attached, hence Apple wanted a better deal.

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