Intel announces major 5G IP auction

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After announcing that it will exit the 5G modem market back in April, Intel has put its IP related to cellular wireless connectivity up for auction as the chipmaker looks to unload around 8,500 assets from its massive portfolio.

Although the company supplied 4G modem chips for Apple's iPhone for the last few years, it has struggled to release a 5G modem in time for the global rollout of the next generation of wireless technology.

Intel's auction will be divided into two parts and bidders will be able to make an offer for its cellular portfolio or its connected device portfolio. The chipmaker's cellular portfolio contains approximately 6,000 patent assets related to 3G, 4G and 5G cellular standards as well as an additional 1,700 assets related to wireless implementation technologies.

Intel's connected device portfolio on the other hand is much smaller and is made up of 500 patents with broad applications for the semiconductor and electronics industries.

Intel's 5G auction

The auction process is being handled by Nader Mousavi of Sullivan & Cromwell and Intel expects to begin accepting non-binding indications of interest from bidders in August.

According to IAM, Intel will launch the auction process for its wireless IP separately from its current efforts to sell its smartphone modem business. However, a prospective buyer could acquire both its IP and modem business.

The company may have struggled to bring a 5G product to market but it has still made great strides in building one of the most robust patent portfolios in the mobile sector.

We'll likely find out more once we get closer to start of the auction but either way, Intel's decision to sell of its patents related to cellular wireless connectivity will have huge ramifications on the industry as a whole. 


Anthony Spadafora

After working with the TechRadar Pro team for the last several years, Anthony is now the security and networking editor at Tom’s Guide where he covers everything from data breaches and ransomware gangs to the best way to cover your whole home or business with Wi-Fi. When not writing, you can find him tinkering with PCs and game consoles, managing cables and upgrading his smart home.