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Number of iBlogs: 12

5 of 12 Blogs by CoolApps

Apple expected to offer 4G LTE iPhone in 2012

Posted on 11-04-2011 04:10 pm


"4G", "LTE" — what does it all mean? In short, speed. Phone carriers are working hard to implement fourth-generation (4G) networks so that you can have a very speedy Internet connection. How fast? If you live in Texas and have a 4G phone, according to DailyTech, you could see speeds as fast as 42Mbps, with an average of 24Mbps. That's much faster than many home DSL or cable connections. These speeds are available on LTE (long-term evolution) networks, which are now state-of-the-art and are being rolled out across the country. But...  Apple hasn't yet engineered the iPhone to be compatible with LTE. That's expected to change in 2012, according to an article on AppleInsider.

The iPhone 4S does have HSDPA, with the potential of 14.4Mbps, but the US carriers don't have the technology in their networks to support this speed. AT&T does have the capability for HSDPA, but the peak rates are 3.6 to 7.2 Mbps. Neither Verizon nor Sprint can do even that well, as they use a different network protocol and can't accommodate HSDPA. So, compared to some of the other phones available, iPhone users are stuck in a bit of a slow lane. Expect that to change.

So why didn't Apple make the iPhone 4S compatible with LTE so you can have fast speeds now? Apparently Apple felt there were problems with battery life and other issues, and as usual, they make the customer's experience the top priority. Plus, LTE coverage is still very spotty. So they avoided the tradeoffs, opting to introduce an LTE phone when the LTE networks are more ready for prime time.

The advent of LTE is not only significant for the greater speeds, but also for the fact that it's going to become what the US has long lacked: a common network protocol. The major carriers, for the first time, will be using the same technology.

Last updated: 11-04-2011 04:10 pm