T-Mobile: Our 3G And 4G Networks Will Be Ready For The iPhone Later This Year

T-Mobile: Our 3G And 4G Networks Will Be Ready For The iPhone Later This Year

T-Mobile wants Apple's iPhone mojo so desperately.

As it has said many times before, T-Mobile is eagerly awaiting the arrival of the iPhone on its network. The carrier has been largely unable to attract unlocked iPhone owners due to the fact that frequency incompatibilities make it impossible to use 3G data speeds on T-Mobile’s 1700 MHz AWS band. T-Mobile started transitioning part of its spectrum over to the iPhone-friendly 1900 MHz band last year, and scattered reports have said that a small number of iPhone users can now use 3G speeds in certain areas of the United States.

Not only is T-Mobile saying that its 3G network will be ready for the iPhone by Q4 of this year, but it also plans to offer HSPA+ 4G speeds on an iPhone-friendly frequency.

T-Mobile CTO Neville Ray recently said that the carrier is freeing up spectrum to support iPhone users, despite the fact that Apple is still not an official partner with the network. Last summer T-Mobile claimed that it had over 1 million unlocked iPhones running on its 2G network. Now that AT&T will unlock an out-of-contract iPhone for free, more customers will be in the position to consider other GSM alternatives, like T-Mobile, in the coming months. The Verizon iPhone is CDMA-only and can not run on T-Mobile.

Apple added LTE networking in the third-gen iPad, and T-Mobile also plans on rolling out LTE with Sony Ericsson and Nokia networks in 2013. The next iPhone is widely expected to come with LTE speeds later this year, so T-Mobile’s network probably won’t be ready in time. The carrier does hope to offer faux-4G speeds in the form of HSPA+ to existing iPhone owners, however. It will be interesting to see if T-Mobile attempts to market to unlocked iPhone owners when its network is ready at the end of 2012.

AT&T had planned to acquire to buy T-Mobile, but the merger fell through in December of last year due to antitrust concerns from the Federal Communications Commission and U.S. Department of Justice. Following the addition of Sprint with the iPhone 4S last October, T-Mobile is the last major carrier in the U.S. to not offer the iPhone.

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  • joewaylo

    Glad they changed their minds. They were adament they weren’t going to bring it to T-Mobile.

  • Lane Jasper

    Glad they changed their minds. They were adament they weren’t going to bring it to T-Mobile.

    They still haven’t though, mind you. It’s more that T-Mobile is bringing the ability to use the iPhone on their network but Apple’s not brining the device to T-Mobile as a purchasable device.

  • Lane Jasper

    It will be interesting to see if T-Mobile attempts to market to unlocked iPhone owners when its network is ready at the end of 2012.”



    I think they will. TMob has always allowed it on their bands but only of course what they had that would work at THAT time, suchs as the 3G iPhone being allowed over EDGE on T-Mob a few years back and still currently does allow.
  • Keith Rowley

    YES! I want an iPhone on T-Mobile!

About the author

Alex HeathAlex Heath has been a staff writer at Cult of Mac for over two years. He is also a co-host of the CultCast. He has been quoted by places like the BBC, KRON 4 News, and books like "ICONIC: A Photographic Tribute to Apple Innovation." If you want to get in touch, additional contact information is available on his personal site. Twitter always works too.

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