How hard is it for Apple to make a T-Mobile iPhone?

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by Mstyle88, Jan 18, 2011.

  1. Mstyle88 macrumors newbie

    Oct 23, 2010
    Just curious, I know T-Mobile uses a slightly different 3g band, 1700 to AT&Ts 1900? (Dont quote me on that!) But how difficult? Would they just build a dual band for the next iPhone or would they in all reality need 2 separate phones? Do some phone manufacturers make phones that work with both bands?
  2. hcho3 macrumors 68030

    May 13, 2010
    T-mobile does use 1700 band. So, you are right. It is not impossible, but they would have to build whole new chip for it, so it costs.

    No offense to t-mobile users, but if iphone did go to another carrier, it would be Sprint before t-mobile.

    Verizon=93 million users
    AT&T=91 million users
    Sprint=49 million users.
    T-mobile=33 million users.

    It looks like apple is trying to focus on GSM networks that supports LTE from forward because that's what both AT&T and Verizon are going for in 2011.

    If I were apple, I would focus on verizon and AT&T instead of T-mobile and Sprint. But, you never know.
  3. lsvtecjohn3 macrumors 6502a

    May 8, 2008
    I don't think it would be hard for Apple to add another band, but I could be wrong. If it isn't hard I think it would be a better move for Apple to go to T Mobile before Sprint just for the fact that T Mobile under the GSM umbrella were Sprint using CDMA and WiMax. I think the WiMax is what stops Sprint from getting the iPhone.

    Almost every other carrier in the world is going to be using LTE im the next few years even T Mobile, there's only going to be a few networks using WiMax.
  4. Applejuiced macrumors Westmere


    Apr 16, 2008
    At the iPhone hacks section.
    Alot easier than making a CDMA iphone.
    All they gotta do is include Tmobiles 3G frequency.
  5. themadrussian macrumors regular

    Jun 15, 2010
    It would be less difficult than making a CDMA iPhone that could be sold on Verizon and Sprint, which combined have 141 million subscribers (93 VZW + 48 Sprint), along with many other carriers worldwide (China Mobile has 500 million but they use a slightly different breed of CDMA) including some major Indian and Asian carriers.

    I would not be surprised if the iPhone 5 has the 1700 UMTS band, and no, it would not be difficult to add. However, there is a much larger market to be had among the other CDMA carriers, right now.
  6. hcho3 macrumors 68030

    May 13, 2010
    Making a phone that works for t-mobile is just one step. Apple has to express interest in it and so does T-mobile. I really don't think Apple is interested in it at this point other than making CDMA iphones 4s and GSM iphones 4s for Verizon and AT&T. These two represent the biggest carriers in the US.

    sorry 33 million users. U aint important. 93 + 91 million > 33 million users.
  7. macinnv macrumors regular

    Jan 17, 2011
    Phoenix, AZ
    You cant consider AT&T to have 90 million subscribers becuase their market is already iPhone saturated. They have had the iPhone for along time and those who were going to get one would have one already. My guess is it will happen within the next 12 months - T Mobile and Sprint that is. That is if supply can keep up with demand. Sprint uses same tech as Verizon, for T-Mobile all they have to do is add the 1700 band. I also wouldn't put it past Apple to revolutionize the world phone into accepting all forms of technology. At the end of the day Apple wants to maximize profit for its shareholders, if it can be done reasonably it will.
  8. profets macrumors 601

    Mar 18, 2009
    You realize its just the addition of one band right? Last year they added two new bands to the iPhone 4 which helped existing euro/asia carriers that already sold the iPhone.

    If Verizon has 90 million subscribers and they built a whole new phone, and have many more costs involved, complicated their supply chain, I'm sure it won't be a big deal to add a band to the existing HSPA iPhone for it to be available to T-mobile with 30 million subscribers (and some smaller carriers in Canada).
  9. samwise macrumors regular

    Apr 17, 2005
    North Salt Lake, Utah
    The iPhone 4 is already on a pentaband radio (850, 900, 1800, 1900, 2100MHz) - is there a hexaband radio available from, say, Qualcomm at an appropriate price?

    It'd be great from a personal standpoint if it were to go to T-Mobile (my fiancee has been on T-Mob for years in Utah, so when I move over we could get one each on a family plan :D)
  10. Stealthipad macrumors 68040


    Apr 30, 2010
    The first step in making this happen would be T-Mo giving Apple a large amount of money. Apple is in the to sell phones and applications but the carrier has to pay to have Apple produce their product.
  11. profets macrumors 601

    Mar 18, 2009
    Did all carriers around the world pay apple as well?

    Apple doesn't have to 'produce' a different product. It already works on T-mobile 2G, and for 3G they simply need to add the 1700 band to the existing iPhone.
  12. Mstyle88 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 23, 2010
    I agree with profets, there are also a lot of people on T-Mobile already with unlocked iPhones suffering with 2g and even more people with Androids on TMO only because they are stuck in contract.
  13. hcho3 macrumors 68030

    May 13, 2010
    Seems like quiet bit of t-mobile users here...
    iPhone isn't on t-mobile. Making a phone for t-mobile is one thing, but apple and t-mobile are both coming to an agreement is another.
  14. profets macrumors 601

    Mar 18, 2009
    There's even a lot of non-tmobile (canadian) users who would love an iPhone with 1700 3G added. Of course, not enough for apple to really care, but if they do add 1700 we'll all be lined up on launch day to buy it unlocked from Apple.
  15. Sh00tingStar macrumors member

    Jun 28, 2010
  16. Sh00tingStar macrumors member

    Jun 28, 2010
  17. Orion126 macrumors regular

    Aug 25, 2010
    Too bad someone in the jailbreak community hasn't figured out how to do it.
  18. mrbrown macrumors 6502a

    Mar 27, 2004
    Ozark, Missouri
    Impossible. The hardware support is just not there. You could certainly unlock the phone to support the T-Mobile 2G network, but hardware support for their 3G network doesn't exist in the iPhone.
  19. Demosthenes X macrumors 68000

    Demosthenes X

    Oct 21, 2008
    This arguments holds no water. By that logic, Apple never would have released the iPhone in Canada, which has a population of 33 million. When the iPhone came to Canada, it was available on one carrier with about 10 million users.

    So if it was worth getting the phone certified and everything else involved with an international launch, to get access to 10 million customers, then surely it makes sense to tweak the chip to get access to 33 million customers...
  20. Stealthipad macrumors 68040


    Apr 30, 2010
    Any carriers that Apple makes an iPhone for paid them to produce them.:mad:

    Being "able" to use a iPhone under a non-authorized carrier has nothing to do with Apple making and delivering the real thing.:eek:

    Which "carriers around the world" are you talking about? LOL!

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