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I'm wondering if Apple decided to settle with Qualcomm, and Intel scuttled a presumably low-selling business, or did Intel abruptly close the business prompting Apple to suddenly settle?

Given that the settlement came in the middle of court arguments unbeknownst to the lawyers, I'm thinking the latter.

Apple was Intel's only LTE modem client, Apple did everything they could for years to give Intel the secrets that made Qualcomm's modems so performant, yet Intel was still a half decade behind in modem sensitivity, leaving a huge gap betwewn Intel and Qualcomm/Samsung.

Having had a little experience in how those conversations go, my guess would be that Intel were doing everything they could to keep Apple's business, but between failure at the foundry level and failure to compete on the actual design level Apple has slowly made the decision that their generation needed to be with Qualcomm. So they'll have sorted the settlement and deal with Qualcomm whilst keeping the door open with Intel. Now that the deal with Qualcomm is finalized they can finally confirm to Intel what their draw down will be and since Intel can't make the volume they need without Apple they've been forced to close down the product line.

Intel has a reputation for completely ripping up departments once they're 'refocusing' but they really only do that after the writing has been on the wall a while. I will be amazed if it slowly becomes clear their 5G backhaul business isn't going the same way though.

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