Intel partners with Mediatek to bring 5G to PCs in 2021

The partnership between Mediatek and Intel implies that always-connected 5G PCs will come to market, but not for a year or two.

Credit: Logitech

Intel’s departure from the 5G smartphone market earlier this year left it with a portfolio of modem technology it needed to do something with. On Monday, it did: Intel announced a manufacturing relationship with Mediatek, which will build a 5G modem for PCs based on a specification Intel will author.

Specifically, Intel will define a “full 5G solution specification,” which includes a 5G modem to be developed and manufactured by Mediatek. Intel representatives didn’t confirm whether the relationship includes an actual IP licensing agreement. The first fruits from the partnership will be more than a year out, however, with products due in early 2021.

Intel also said that Fibocom will actually be manufacturing M.2 versions of the modems, which will be optimized for Intel’s own Core processors. 

Though it’s not clear when Mediatek’s solution will appear within PCs, one thing that consumers can take away from this partnership is that Intel sees 5G as a part of the PC platform, and an integrated one at that. Qualcomm, too, has made 5G an integral part of its platform, both in smartphones and in PCs. 

Now, however, it’s up to PC makers. The Microsoft Surface Pro X is one of the few laptops designed with LTE connectivity from the beginning. It’s still up to the consumer to provide their own SIM or used the integrated eSIM functionality to enable connectivity. It seems that future PCs will be built around an always-on 5G connection, but it’s still not exactly clear when that vision will become a reality.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.
Mark Hachman

Mark Hachman

PC World (US online)
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Toys for Boys

Skywatcher Dobsonian 8″ Collapsible Telescope

Learn more >

Family Friendly

Whodunnit™ Duo-Scope MFL-007 Microscope Kit

Learn more >

Stocking Stuffer

Logitech Ultimate Ears Wonderboom 2 Bluetooth Speaker

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Tom Sellers

MSI P65

This smart laptop was enjoyable to use and great to work on – creating content was super simple.

Lolita Wang

MSI GT76

It really doesn’t get more “gaming laptop” than this.

Jack Jeffries

MSI GS75

As the Maserati or BMW of laptops, it would fit perfectly in the hands of a professional needing firepower under the hood, sophistication and class on the surface, and gaming prowess (sports mode if you will) in between.

Taylor Carr

MSI PS63

The MSI PS63 is an amazing laptop and I would definitely consider buying one in the future.

Christopher Low

Brother RJ-4230B

This small mobile printer is exactly what I need for invoicing and other jobs such as sending fellow tradesman details or step-by-step instructions that I can easily print off from my phone or the Web.

Aysha Strobbe

Microsoft Office 365/HP Spectre x360

Microsoft Office continues to make a student’s life that little bit easier by offering reliable, easy to use, time-saving functionality, while continuing to develop new features that further enhance what is already a formidable collection of applications

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?