Apple announces global iPhone 5 4G LTE expansion with 36 new carriers

Posted:
in iPhone edited January 2014
Apple will more than double the number of carriers that support fast 4G LTE data service for its flagship iPhone 5 next week, with 36 new LTE carriers joining its existing pool of 24.

When asked about "the pace of LTE build outs across the globe, in Europe or parts of Asia" and how that could have an impact on Apple's iPhone business as LTE capacity becomes more available, Apple's chief executive Tim Cook outlined big expansion plans beginning next week.

"Today we have 24 carriers around the world that provide LTE support for iPhone 5. Those are in countries like the US, Korea, the UK, Germany, Canada Japan, Australia and a few others," Cook said.

"Next week," he added, "we're adding 36 more carriers for LTE support. These carriers will be in countries that we are not currently supporting LTE."

Cook specifically noted new carriers "in Italy, Denmark, Finland, Switzerland, Philippines, and also several middle eastern countries," pointing out that "if you look at the total of all of these, the incremental subscribers in those countries it's over 300 million."

That subscriber total of the 36 country expansion is just over 10 percent larger than Verizon Wireless, which is currently the world's largest LTE carrier, with about 257 million subscribers. Verizon just announced having sold 9.8 million smartphones in the winter quarter, 6.2 million of which were iPhones.

In addition to carriers supporting LTE, Cook also drew attention to iPhone 5's ability to work with other advanced data networks, noting, "as you know iPhone 5 also supports other ultra fast networks like HSPA+, with downloads up to 42Mbps, which is 3 times the speed as iPhone 4S."

Cook concluded his comments on global carrier expansion by saying, "we feel really good about the situation we are in, particularly with these adds next week."

Apple first launched LTE support one year ago for its third generation iPad introducing a Retina Display. Last September, Apple launched iPhone 5 as its first LTE phone, expanding LTE and HSPA+ support to new carriers globally.





Apple currently sells three versions of iPhone 5 (and new iPad 4 and iPad mini models equipped with LTE mobile data): a model that works exclusively with American AT&T and Canadian carriers using LTE bands 4 and 17; a model supporting CDMA carriers Verizon and Sprint in the US and KDDI in Japan, using LTE bands 1,3,5,13 and 25; and a third model supporting LTE bands 1, 3 and 5, sold to subscribers in Germany, the UK, Australlia, Singapore, Hong Kong, Korea and Softbank in Japan.

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 20


    Don't report things like this... the stock will fall another 10%!

  • Reply 2 of 20

    Apple's profit margins are dropping, due to being forced by competitors. 


     


    Google and Amazon are very scary to Apple's bottom line because they don't give a crap about hardware profits. Google would put a nexus 7 in every cereal box if it could. 


     


    Nexus 4, Nexus 10, Nexus 7, Amazon Kindle fire HD, ect.. are all about getting people to buy more stuff and looking at ads. 


     


    But by far the biggest threat to Apple is the Telecom Subsidy economy going bust in the U.S. 


    Apple should be doing whatever it can to make sure T. mobiles plan of eliminating phone subsidy fails. Because if it does work and get adopted by the other telecoms, well that $600+ iphone is not going to cut it. 

  • Reply 3 of 20
    jfc1138jfc1138 Posts: 3,090member
    That LTE speed is why I went for the 5 as a followup to my 4S and I love the speed.
  • Reply 4 of 20
    Please explain how Verizon had 250M subscribers. Are there even that many in the whole US?
  • Reply 5 of 20
    ifij775ifij775 Posts: 470member
    This was about the only positive surprise I heard, while Tim Cook's hyperbole mostly fell flat
  • Reply 6 of 20
    ifij775ifij775 Posts: 470member
    jfc1138 wrote: »
    That LTE speed is why I went for the 5 as a followup to my 4S and I love the speed.
    I think LTE is the feature that made this device a delight to use, while previous phones seemed annoying without wifi
  • Reply 7 of 20


    Originally Posted by Creek0512 View Post

    Please explain how Verizon had 250M subscribers. Are there even that many in the whole US?


     


    That many subscribers overall, you mean? It's possible they count multiple phone lines as different subscribers.

  • Reply 8 of 20
    gwmacgwmac Posts: 1,797member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post


     


    That many subscribers overall, you mean? It's possible they count multiple phone lines as different subscribers.



    Verizon doesn't have anywhere close to 257 million subscribers no matter how you slice it. Most recent estimates peg them at 113 million.


     


    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Verizon_Wireless

  • Reply 9 of 20
    timbittimbit Posts: 331member
    It's too bad the entire world doesn't operate on 1 or 2 bands of LTE. How can we standardize wifi but not LTE? It would be so much easier!
  • Reply 10 of 20


    Originally Posted by Timbit View Post

    It's too bad the entire world doesn't operate on 1 or 2 bands of LTE. How can we standardize wifi but not LTE? It would be so much easier!


     


    There's just not enough bandwidth available.


     


    It's different with Wi-Fi. I forget why; probably because of where it resides.


     


    Remember the 700Mhz auction when TV stopped using it? That was BIG, because it represented free, low-cost airspace.

  • Reply 11 of 20
    gwmacgwmac Posts: 1,797member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post


     


    There's just not enough bandwidth available.


     


    It's different with Wi-Fi. I forget why; probably because of where it resides.


     


    Remember the 700Mhz auction when TV stopped using it? That was BIG, because it represented free, low-cost airspace.



    You are 0-2 tonight. With a quad band GSM phone for example chances are you could at least make a call in most countries around the world. No so for LTE for a wide variety of reasons. And if you think the 700Mhz auction was free or low-cost, I've got a bridge to sell ya...

  • Reply 12 of 20


    Originally Posted by gwmac View Post

    No so for LTE for a wide variety of reasons.


     


    One of those reasons being the unavailability of said equal bandwidth in places worldwide… 






    And if you think the 700Mhz auction was free or low-cost, I've got a bridge to sell ya...



     


    Free: as in no longer containing content. Usually past tense, as in "freed of interference".


     


    Low-cost: as in power required to handle transponders, vs. higher frequency airspace.


     


    For these reasons, the bidding at the auction went quite high.

  • Reply 13 of 20
    timbittimbit Posts: 331member
    TS, are you saying that the bands wouldn't be able to carry the number of people?

    I don't really understand it. I think of it as wifi; the more towers you put up, the more coverage, and increased server and bandwidth capacity means greater numbers of customers who can use it. Is it not the same with 3G and LTE?
  • Reply 14 of 20


    Originally Posted by Timbit View Post

    TS, are you saying that the bands wouldn't be able to carry the number of people?



    I don't really understand it. I think of it as wifi; the more towers you put up, the more coverage, and increased server and bandwidth capacity means greater numbers of customers who can use it. Is it not the same with 3G and LTE?


     


    Wi-Fi has a limit, too. I don't know all the technical bits about it, but there are only so many devices that can be connected to your local Wi-Fi network at once. It's the same with cell towers. Eventually you can't put up any more towers (or any more Wi-Fi routers) because you'll run into signal interference. You know how radio stations increment by 0.2? That's to lower interference with neighboring stations.


     


    CORRECT ME, ANYONE, IF THE FOLLOWING IS WRONG. IT'S LATE AND I'M STUPID.


     


    Well, on your local Wi-Fi network, each device connects on a slightly different fraction of whatever band it's on. That way the signals don't cross and data isn't sent to the wrong place. It's also why microwaves can screw with Wi-Fi; some of them operate within those bands. 


     


    Well, if you have too many base stations in the same place, the signals will overlap. You can mitigate that a little by using the "Channel" option in AirPort Utility, but eventually it just gets completely saturated. Same with any frequency, so that's how it goes with cell phones. 


     


    With LTE, I figure that not all countries have the same bands free for public traffic. So phones have to support all bands that LTE is plopped into in each country that has it, otherwise you can't get LTE speeds there. It just depends on what is free where. The US' 700Mhz band, formerly for TV, is now partially LTE.

  • Reply 15 of 20
    timbittimbit Posts: 331member
    Makes sense, thanks for the explanation!
  • Reply 16 of 20
    Over here in The Netherlands we still do not have 4G. T-Mobile will be the first provider to support Apple devices. KPN* (formerly government owned) advertises with 4G but alas, that is on the 800MHz frequency. That decision was cheaper because they could modify existing towers whereas T-Mobile is investing in new towers and are able to support the required 1800MHz.

    [SIZE=2][I]* KPN, where cheap comes first, connectivity second and service is a word we do not understand.[/I][/SIZE]

    ** For the Dutch readers:

    [IMG ALT=""]http://forums.appleinsider.com/content/type/61/id/19567/width/500/height/1000[/IMG]
    Het zit ook in de kleuren van het logo: je ergert je groen en geel en betaald je blauw
  • Reply 17 of 20

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Creek0512 View Post



    Please explain how Verizon had 250M subscribers. Are there even that many in the whole US?


     


    You do realize that Verizon networks are global, right? They have subscribers all around the globe in subsidiaries and joint operations with other Telcos.

  • Reply 18 of 20
    kdarlingkdarling Posts: 1,640member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post


    CORRECT ME, ANYONE, IF THE FOLLOWING IS WRONG. IT'S LATE AND I'M STUPID.



     


    You actually did really well.


     


    Quote:


     


    With LTE, I figure that not all countries have the same bands free for public traffic. So phones have to support all bands that LTE is plopped into in each country that has it, otherwise you can't get LTE speeds there. It just depends on what is free where. The US' 700Mhz band, formerly for TV, is now partially LTE.




     


    This is correct.  The reason there isn't a single worldwide LTE frequency, is the same reason why GSM phones have to support so many frequencies to be able operate worldwide:   not every country or region had a particular band free of other usage all at the same time.


     


    (Really old cell users will remember when UMTS-3G radios were added to GSM phones, and we went through the same thing.  People wrung their hands and worried that they couldn't use their 3G phones everywhere.   Heck, the same thing for just 2G GSM.  That's why it requires including a quad or more band radio.)


     


    Each country and region had its own set of frequencies available at different times, due to what technology was being used, due to military needs, and due to politics.


     


    Probably the biggest influence on frequency allocations has been new inventions that required a band.  For example, in the late 1940s engineers realized that future microwave oven usage would interfere in the GHz range, so it was reserved for quite some time before WiFi, Bluetooth, wireless home phones, remote controls, etc were allowed to use it.   There was also the rise of microwave antennas that covered the country for long distance calls.   Then there was CB radios, UHF TV, and so forth.  Still later, some freqs had to be reserved for satellite communications.  Analog cell phones.  Then digital cell phones.  And so forth.   No doubt the future will hold more changes.


     


    As for speeds and number of users, again you were right.  That all depends on the bandwidths that are allocated.  For example, Verizon paid big money to get the 700MHz band in the US, because it had nice wide 22MHz to 46 MHz wide sections that allow for more users and greater speed.   Plus it had greater geographic coverage in a single band.  It all made LTE deployment much easier for them.

  • Reply 19 of 20

    Can you believe it? This is mighty big of Apple to OK the various carriers use of LTE. What's next - Apple approves of birthday cake?
  • Reply 20 of 20


    Originally Posted by SeveralTitsUp View Post

    This is mighty big of Apple to OK the various carriers use of LTE.


     


    See, this isn't at all what is happening, so I don't understand why you're pretending this is what's happening. 

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