Apple May Bring 4G / LTE Network By The End Of The Year

After the disappointing news of delayed iPhone 5 we have something good news to share. The more interesting rumor from yesterday, though, was that Apple would refrain from unveiling the iPhone 5 at this year’s WWDC, instead focusing entirely on software. Many reports however, are now suggesting otherwise, but TechCrunch has released a detailed report explaining what they believe to coming in iOS 5, and then continues to mention why we may not see an iPhone 5 at WWDC, and their answer is simple: LTE.

The contributor Steve Cheney of TechCrunch believes that iPhone 5 fall launch can make LTE quite possible. He speculates that if iPhone 5 is launched this summer the chances of LTE is zero to ten percent, if it comes in fall, chances are 50 percent and if iPhone 5 comes in January than 100 percent it will have LTE support.

A fall timeframe would give Apple a more vetted and lower power Qualcomm chip for LTE, Cheney says. When the Verizon iPhone was unveiled in January, Apple COO Tim Cook addressed the LTE issue directly. “The first generation LTE chipsets force some design compromises. Some of which we would not make,” he said. If Cheney is right, that may not be such an issue later this year.

LTE (short for Long Term Evolution) is the technology behind both AT&T’s and Verizon’s 4G network. Verizon is slightly ahead of their nemesis in their rollout schedule, but both companies should have much of the United States blanketed in 4G LTE by the end of 2013. Verizon in fact, just released their first Android device that is capable of running on the new 4G network, and reviews have widely praised the incredible speed (particularly compared to other technologies that are being touted as ’4G,’ such as Sprint’s WiMax and T-Mobile’s HSPDA) that rivals home broadband. It may make sense for Apple to continue its work on 4G LTE over the summer, and then release one single device that was capable of running old protocols (GSM and CDMA) as well as LTE. In fact, Apple’s current Qualcomm chip in the Verizon iPhone 4 is already capable of both GSM and CDMA. Apple just needs to redesign their antenna to accommodate it.

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