iPhone 8 hate? One of Apple's biggest partners is ripping on 'iPhone X'

There's a very good chance the iPhone 8 and iPhone X launch event guest list won't include Qualcomm, Apple's business-partner-turned-legal-opponent in 2017.

Qualcomm makes the modem chips in some versions of the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7S Plus, but right now it's raining on Apple's parade by hitting the company for its lack of innovation.

There are 20 smartphone features Qualcomm introduced that Apple can't take credit for, according to a list by Francisco Cheng, Qualcomm's Director of Technical Marketing.

While it doesn't mention Apple by name, the timing makes the intention behind the list quite obvious, especially as Apple is suing Qualcomm (and Apple is suing it back) for alleged unfair patent charges.

Qualcomm's claims

So what's on the list? Qualcomm says it introduced fast-charging, an OLED display, a water-resistant touchscreen and a 4K display on a phone. All are sound arguments.

Apple is only now getting to OLED screens, and likely doesn't need 2K screens never mind 4K. It's also about to catch up with its own iPhone augmented reality solution for iOS 11 and introduce a bezel-less design on the iPhone 8.

Qualcomm is also taking credit for iris scanning and face recognition – and Apple may one-up that latter feature given its rumored advanced 3D face-scanning technology that's supposed to be in the iPhone 8. Also, the Note 8 facial recognition is problematic at best.

We haven't seen a fingerprint-under-the-display technology work outside of limited demos, though Qualcomm's includes this as one of its points. This may be its strongest point in the future, but not right now. Wishful thinking.

Fair or unfair?

Qualcomm has researched and developed a lot of important technology. It's an early pioneer among smartphone innovators. But it's not 100% correct here.

Qualcomm is an early pioneer among smartphone innovators. But it's not 100% correct here.

For example, it individually mentions Mobile HDR Premium, Ultra HD Premium playback, Netflix HDR and Amazon HDR, rather than wrapping all of that closely related that technology into one point. It's acting like a college student trying to triple-space their way into lengthening a term paper. Nice try.

It also doesn't take the quality of the technology into mind. The Lenovo Phab Pro 2 wasn't the greatest phone, and Google appears to have moved away from Project Tango with the introduction of ARCore, a completely different augmented reality initiative. Apple will add AR to its iPhone series, new and slightly old. 

Features like virtual 5.1 surround sound speakers, a 4K display and a bezel-less design can be found on Android phones and are fantastic – but are on different devices. That doesn't really help anyone completely.

Apple may not have been the first to this technology, but it does often introduce the best. And sometimes it's with Qualcomm's help.

iPhone launch events haven't really given us something that wows us in the last few years. This will change with the iPhone 8 launch, and right now Qualcomm's the only one not liking it very much.

Matt Swider