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Apple: LTE iPhone would have required 'design compromises'

updated 11:55 am EST, Tue January 11, 2011

Apple's Cook says 4G iPhone not possible right now

Apple passed on making an LTE version of the Verizon iPhone because it would have required too many sacrifices, Chief Operating Officer Tim Cook said during the keynote to launch the CDMA device. The first generation of LTE chipsets weren't good for the device because they would have required "design compromises," he said. The launch was instead about timing and thus better to get the device to people who wanted it now, not later.

"I can't tell you the number of times I have been asked over this incredible success run of [the] iPhone: when will the iPhone work on Verizon's network?" Cook said.

LTE was something that would likely happen in the future, but Cook wouldn't comment on Apple's product roadmap.

The remarks are largely accurate as most LTE-capable phones have had to make clear sacrifices to accommodate the larger size and power-hungry nature of the chipsets. Phones like the HTC Thunderbolt, Motorola Droid Bionic and LG Revolution are all over four inches in size and often have extra-large batteries to compensate for the extra power draw. Verizon executives talking to Electronista at its 4G event admitted that compensation was necessary to handle the new technology.

Apple followed a similar practice with the GSM iPhone. The electronics firm launched the initial iPhone with 2G service as 3G chipsets in 2007 were too battery-dependent and otherwise inefficient for Apple's goals and design experience at the time. It launched the iPhone 3G a year later and still found room to optimize the battery life for 3G over subsequent revisions.

The phones that already have a form of 4G, such as the HTC Evo 4G, have usually seen short battery life as their main issue. Sprint has gone so far as to recommend that customers turn off the WiMAX radio when it isn't needed, since it consumes much more energy than the 3G companion chip.



By Electronista Staff
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Comments

  1. Heinz Doofenshmirtz

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Jun 2010

    -6

    What this really means...

    Is that Apple wouldn't cave to Verizon's demands to access the new standard (not that it's really available yet anyway), and they would only cooperate with Apple if they got to say what the phone could or could not do.

    My contract with AT&T for my 3Gs is up in August, and if Verizon has forced their sub-standard and overpriced V-cast service onto the iPhone, or any other such c***, I'll stick with AT&T, thank you.

  1. slapppy

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Mar 2008

    +2

    It also tells you

    Nice to finally point out those issues, that these tech writers conveniently keep forgetting.

    "The phones that already have a form of 4G, such as the HTC Evo 4G, have usually seen short battery life as their main issue. Sprint has gone so far as to recommend that customers turn off the WiMAX radio when it isn't needed, since it consumes much more energy than the 3G companion chip."

    "The remarks are largely accurate as most LTE-capable phones have had to make clear sacrifices to accommodate the larger size and power-hungry nature of the chipsets. Phones like the HTC Thunderbolt, Motorola Droid Bionic and LG Revolution are all over four inches in size and often have extra-large batteries to compensate for the extra power draw. Verizon executives talking to Electronista at its 4G event admitted that compensation was necessary to handle the new technology."

    Comment buried. Show
  1. facebook_Chris

    Via Facebook

    Joined: Jan 2011

    -21

    Compromises

    Like a working antenna?

  1. testudo

    Forum Regular

    Joined: Aug 2001

    +1

    compromises

    More like "Well, we still would have to include CDMA, since LTE is in limited use and has no voice capability. So what was the point?"

  1. facebook_Justin

    Via Facebook

    Joined: Jan 2011

    +2

    comment title

    You just gotta laugh at the people who are seriously upset with the lack of 100+ MBPS speed on a cellphone. Gosh sakes I use my unlocked 3GS on T-Mobile's EDGE connection and get under 200 KBPS and I'm fine with it. Are you guys seriously that far away from Wi-Fi so frequently that you need turbo speeds which will cost you turbo $$$?

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