LTE iPhone on Verizon? Their wireless data track record says no

LTE iPhone on Verizon? Their wireless data track record says no

Summary: Apple may have kicked everyone else in gear a few years ago with their user interface, but they have not yet led in the wireless data technology used on phones so there is no real reason to believe they will start now with Verizon and LTE. They might release a CDMA iPhone, but I have doubts about that as well.


We heard the news today that Verizon will be aggressively rolling out LTE smartphones in the first half of 2011 and then we heard the same years-old rumor that the iPhone would come to Verizon. If we look back at what Apple has done in the smartphone space there is no real indication to think that the iPhone and LTE have anything to do with each other. Verizon may indeed roll out a CDMA phone in 2011, but I don't think it's release has anything to do at all with the LTE news. I believe that LTE devices will be webOS, Android, and Windows Phone models and not an iPhone.

Apple released the first iPhone in late 2007 with only an EDGE radio while everyone else was rolling out 3G smartphones in America. They then caught on and released a 3G iPhone, followed by the 3GS and iPhone 4 that all three had the same 3G data support. The iPhone 4 doesn't have the latest HSPA+ support that AT&T is rolling out so when HSPA+ devices hit later this year and early next year the iPhone 4 will be one of the slowest smartphones on AT&T. Apple has not demonstrated that it is willing to lead in the wireless data technology so I don't think they are going to start now with LTE. LTE will still be in an early rollout phase and Verizon stated it will take up to three years to cover the US.

Apple will wait and let other manufacturers work with LTE to get the kinks out and then come in when the technology is tried and tested and throw on a good user experience. Do you honestly think Apple will roll out a LTE-capable iPhone in early 2011?

Topics: Verizon, Apple, Hardware, iPhone, Mobility, Networking, Smartphones, Wi-Fi

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  • RE: LTE iPhone on Verizon? Their wireless data track record says no

    No, I don't think Apple will roll out a LTE-capable iPhone in early 2011. I think it will come in late 2011 (in time for the 2011 holiday shopping season) or early 2012 as a second generation Verizon model.

    I agree that Apple is going to use the same approach that they used when they released the non-3G original iPhone but I think they did it for profit motives not for any technical reasons. They knew that all the users of the original iPhone who loved it would want to have the new 3G capable model so they would end up buying their another iPhone in about a year. Most people typically wait 2 years before getting a new phone but Apple gave them a reason to upgrade after a year. I think Apple is going to employ the same strategy here. If the first CDMA iPhone comes out in Jan 2011, they will release the next generation CDMA/LTE capable iPhone sometime between Nov 2011 and Jan 2012. The customers who bought the first one and liked it will want to have the LTE capable model so Apple will give Verizon customers a reason to get another iPhone after only 1 year instead of the normal 2 year upgrade cycle.