Kuo: iPhone 13 to support LEO satellite communication, allowing users to make phone calls and send texts without cell signal

By Benjamin Mayo

August 29, 2021

In the future, Kuo speculates that LEO satellite communication may also be used by the upcoming Apple AR headset, the Apple Car and other Internet-of-Things accessories.

Kuo says that the iPhone 13 will use a customized version of the Qualcomm X60 baseband modem chip. This chip will support communications over satellite.

It is unclear if sending messages and making calls over satellite would only work with Apple services like iMessage and FaceTime, or if Apple could proxy satellite communications to standard cell towers on the other end. It is also unclear if satellite features would be free, like GPS, or would come with associated usage charges.