While a Verizon iPhone
is widely anticipated for early 2011, the question remains: will it support 4G? On Verizon this would mean LTE
, and Verizon is set to roll that out
to 38 metropolitan areas and 62 airports by the end of 2010. The answer to that question, reportedly, is "no such luck."
According to TechCrunch, not only will the rumored Q1 2011 Verizon
iPhone eschew LTE, so will the iPhone's annual refresh, which is expected to be in June or July, as usual. Instead, the iPhone 5 (or whatever it is called) will be a dual-mode device, capable of using both CDMA and GSM networks.
These types of devices have shipped previously, dubbed as World Phones by CDMA
carriers like Verizon or Sprint
, who can then have the consumer use a SIM when traveling.
The reason, the report said, is that "Apple doesn’t want to mess with the first generation of LTE chipsets, since they will be bulky and power hungry." You'll recall that although 3G was available at the time of the first iPhone's release, AT&T skipped that feature for a year, using 2.5G EDGE until the iPhone 3G was released in 2008.
Verizon's LTE connections will have 5 to 12 megabits per second download and 2 to 5 Mbps upload speeds, in real-life terms, Verizon has said. That's significantly faster than 3G speeds.
Apple, of course, is confident enough that millions will flock to a new iPhone, 4G or no 4G. Android, however, will definitely have 4G LTE devices available by next year; Sprint already sells 4G devices for its WiMax network.