Apple Must Approve Carrier LTE Networks Before Allowing iPhone 5 to Connect to Them

Discussion in ' News Discussion' started by MacRumors, Nov 30, 2012.

  1. MacRumors macrumors bot


    Apr 12, 2001

    Apple does not allow the iPhone 5 to join a carrier's LTE network until it passes the company's own internal tests, according to Swiss cell carrier Swisscom. The report from (by way of The Next Web), says that Apple enables LTE support on existing iPhone 5 models only after first testing the carrier network itself.

    Apple has been selling the iPhone 5 in countries where it doesn't officially support LTE on any carriers, though most carriers have at least initial plans to support LTE in coming years with many in the midst of full LTE rollouts. quotes Alcatel Lucent CTO Marcus Weldon saying that Apple was "a bit big for its boots" with the policy, hinting that it was unusual for a handset manufacturer to have such control over its handsets. However, this has been the case since the iPhone first launched nearly 5 years ago.

    Apple has exerted extraordinary control over the iPhone in a number of ways, including providing most tech support and replacements via its 800-number and the Apple Retail Store rather than through the carriers, as well as Apple forbidding carriers from preinstalling any of its own software applications or services on the iPhone.

    Article Link: Apple Must Approve Carrier LTE Networks Before Allowing iPhone 5 to Connect to Them
  2. gregwyattjr macrumors regular


    Oct 17, 2008
    This is Apple ensuring the best possible experience for the customer.
  3. prizm macrumors member

    Oct 29, 2007
    Apple should of firstly approved Verizon's 4G LTE network in Manhattan. Because in a lot of places it seriously blows.:mad:
  4. goobot macrumors 603


    Jun 26, 2009
    long island NY
    I don't think that is how it works...
  5. prizm macrumors member

    Oct 29, 2007
    Not how it works.... but should have considered it. :)
  6. KPOM macrumors G5

    Oct 23, 2010
    True. Manhattan is one place where AT&T's LTE network is better than Verizon's in my experience (I have AT&T on my iPhone and Verizon on my iPad). With 3G networks, it was the reverse (AT&T's is bad, and Verizon's is better).
  7. touchtone561 macrumors member

    Sep 17, 2008
    That and CONTROL!

    interesting, now that they sell an unlocked iPhone 5
  8. iphone495 macrumors member

    Sep 13, 2012
  9. needfx macrumors 68040


    Aug 10, 2010
    macrumors apparently
  10. Dwalls90 macrumors 601


    Feb 5, 2009
    Apple controlling everything? You don't say ...
  11. Westside guy macrumors 601

    Westside guy

    Oct 15, 2003
    The soggy side of the Pacific NW
    No, this is the Steve Jobs legacy of being the ultimate control freak.
  12. kayloh20 macrumors regular

    Apr 8, 2010
    Chicago, IL
    I don't think they test the network coverage...that would take forever to drive through all the countries testing every place, even if there were multiple people doing it at the same time.

    They're probably testing standards, compatibility, and security and whatnot.

    I agree with you, though. Carrier network is very subpar compared to other technologies. Over here, AT&T's LTE is way worse than Verizon's. I can get five bars of LTE and zero data.
  13. wikus macrumors 68000


    Jun 1, 2011
    Planet earth.
    This kind of crap goes well with Apple's obsession for control over things like removable batteries, upgradeable RAM, the ability to take back your own media from iDevices, etc.

    Hard to defend Apple when history shows the company for its true colours.... often.
  14. Mabus51 macrumors 6502a

    Aug 16, 2007
    My guess, they are tired of being sued over Marketing Campaigns. By approving the network themselves they can avoid petty lawsuits. :rolleyes:
  15. cheezehead, Nov 30, 2012
    Last edited: Nov 30, 2012

    cheezehead macrumors newbie


    Sep 13, 2012
  16. nagromme macrumors G5


    May 2, 2002
    True to form: Android is all about freedom... For the carriers, not the user.

    And Apple is all about making the user--not the carrier--happy.

    Some people feel bad for the poor carriers losing some "control" (anti-Apple buzzword #17!). I don't.
  17. haruhiko macrumors 601


    Sep 29, 2009
    Because LTE if not properly configured is a serious battery hog. Apple wants the network to be optimised for the LTE iPhones and iPads to ensure a controllable experience at the end user.
  18. smithrh macrumors 68020


    Feb 28, 2009
    What most don't know is that the LTE standard is actually quite flexible, and it's very possible to put up a network that meets standards, but is actually a horrible performer.

    For example, you can vary these RF parameters:

    * RF bandwidth (down to 1.25 MHz)
    * MIMO levels (down to no MIMO at all)
    * QAM modulation schemes

    In addition, performance will also vary tremendously by band as the network gets populated by users. Specifically, while Verizon has a great band (700 MHz) to roll out with as it has better propagation, it will deteriorate more quickly with use than say 1.8 or 1.9 GHz will.

    I'm guessing that Apple knows that people will tend to equate LTE with really great performance (throughput, latency), and they don't want the backlash that would come if they sold a device on a crappy - but still "legal" - LTE network.

    That, or it could be that the iPhone doesn't support certain parts of the LTE standard yet. That's not actually unusual - but this approach would spare them the resulting spotlight if that came to light.
  19. Macboy Pro macrumors 6502a

    Feb 16, 2011
    I consistently get 30mb to 40mb in Florida on AT&T. I would be there are no places on the Verizon LTE network that get that and I bet there are very few that get half that. Verizons network is larger at this point but WAAAAAAAY slower. Pretty soon, Verizon will start building their faster network and it will be AT&T with more PoPs and Verizon with a faster network in less places. They leap frog each other because the technology is developing to quickly to roll it out everywhere.
  20. Saladinos macrumors 68000


    Feb 26, 2008
    hah! Big for its boots! Does he know how big Apple is?

    Well, I bet its unusual when you're used to carrier-dominated Android OEMs.
  21. stepmuel macrumors newbie

    Feb 1, 2012
    If anyone doesn't understand why Apple does this: A carrier could have set up its network in a way that doesn't work with the iPhone that well or use hardware with slightly different interpretations of the standard. If they test the phone first, they can make adjustments to their phone (or the carriers infrastructure) whenever necessary.

    If they didn't do this, people buying Apple product would notice that they don't work reliably and blame Apple. This hurts Apples reputation which it needs to sell its products. Other companies might think this isn't worth the effort or simply don't care enough. Maybe they have other business models (like making their products cheap, brag with specifications or producing ads that will make their customers hurt Apples reputation for them). For Apple, reputation is a very valuable card.
  22. Allenbf macrumors 6502

    Jul 7, 2012
    Elsewhere, USA
    Yes, he was. And I'm glad because the Apple experience is light years ahead of the competition because of it.

    Look at Siri and Maps. I fully believe that neither would have been released in that state had Steve still been "hands on," simply because of his obsessiveness.

    In other words, I think Steve would say "you're welcome," although I certainly wouldn't want to put words in his mouth.

    EDIT: I meant hands on with Siri, not Maps, as that was after his death. Just clearing that up before some smartass does it.
  23. webbuzz macrumors 65816


    Jul 24, 2010
    I am okay with this. Anyone remember the days of Verizon disabling Bluetooth in certain handsets in order to charge a service fee to use it?
  24. omenatarhuri macrumors 6502a

    Feb 9, 2010
    Not a huge fan of this. I've had iPhone 5 since launch and also a 4G enabled contract. Just cant use LTE cause of Apple. Country Finland.
  25. cheezehead macrumors newbie


    Sep 13, 2012
    After thinking about it, I wonder how much of this is a new style to the vendor lock-in crap they use to pull.

    At Launch - Phone is released to a handful of carriers
    6-9 months later - Announcement of hey, it's come to *fill in the blank carrier*
    A year later - *fill in the blank carrier* we now have the....

    To now everyone "gets" the device but it's just nerfed until the carrier lock-in period ends.

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