Originally Posted by KingKuei
LTE is not yet the answer because Verizon users will still require something to fall back on should LTE be unavailable in a certain area, forcing the handset maker to include EVDO/CDMA2000 capability, thus still requiring the addition of a separate chip and associated hardware.
Bell Canada and Telus deployed their HSPA+ (21,6Mbps) last November. Their HSPA+ network is working alongside their CDMA/EVDO network. And since November, both carry the iPhone 3GS and other GSM-based handsets, and yes those phones do come with a SIM card, and no Apple did not make a separate phone for Bell Canada, and Telus. It's the same iPhone that Rogers Canada has been selling since 2008.
The phones that use the HSPA+ network of Bell and Telus have indeed nothing to fall back on, but as you can see, it is not required for a phone to be able to fall back on CDMA/EVDO, like you said. You have your proof right there. It certainly did not stop Bell and Telus from offering the iPhone and other GSM/HSPA/HSPA+ phones to their customers.
Additionally, the HSPA+ network that Bell and Telus rolled out last November will be their upgrade path to LTE. Verizon wanted to skip this step and go directly from CDMA to LTE. It is their choice, but had they chosen to go HSPA+ before going LTE, they would have been carrying the iPhone for a while now. It's been 3 years now, they could have deployed HSPA+ already. It took Bell and Telus something like 1.5 years to roll it out from the arrival of the iPhone exclusively to Rogers in summer 2008.
As for the matter at hand, it seemed to me that AT&T always had problems with its network, way before the iPhone existed. So if there is someone to blame it is AT&T. And AT&T seems to be the only mobile carrier that struggles so much. Correct me if I'm wrong, but are there many other carriers struggling as much as AT&T? From Rogers/Bell/Telus in Canada, to UK O2, France Orange, Germany Deutche Telekom/T-Mobile, Australia Telstra, etc., we don't seem to be hearing much network problems. So what is the matter with AT&T? Does anyone have an answer? Is it lack for investments, faulty equipments, lack for vision? Certainly not lack of money because AT&T is making money!