LTE Stories December 5, 2019

US carriers exaggerated LTE coverage, says FCC, but won’t pay a penalty

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) found that Verizon, T-Mobile, and US Cellular all presented exaggerated LTE coverage maps. However, the FCC says that it won’t penalize them for doing so, in apparent contradiction to the watchdog’s stated policy…

LTE Stories September 11, 2019

Even without 5G, iPhone 11 Pro has a notable LTE speed boost

As expected, Apple’s iPhone 11 lineup arrived without support for 5G. Compatibility with the latest cellular standard is said to be arriving with next year’s iPhones but that doesn’t mean the iPhone 11 and iPhone 11 Pro don’t bring LTE improvements as early LTE test results show a nice speed boost over the iPhone XS.

LTE Stories May 31, 2017

Apple has been toying with the idea of a SIM-equipped MacBook since at least 2007, as a prototype MacBook Pro later revealed. The company has continued to explore the idea, with a patent on the concept emerging just last year.

Steve Jobs revealed in 2008 that Apple rejected the idea for a couple of reasons. First, that it would add complexity to the device, and second that it would lock customers in to a particular carrier.

Neither argument applies today, and news that a number of major Windows laptop manufacturers are committed to producing LTE-equipped laptops is likely to put pressure on Apple to revisit the idea …

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LTE Stories May 3, 2017

Sprint offers free LTE signal booster to homes & businesses to double data speeds

Sprint has announced the Magic Box, a signal booster that it’s making available free of charge to ‘qualifying’ homes and businesses. The booster – which it bills as ‘the world’s first all-wireless small call’ – amplifies LTE data signals from nearby cell towers, increasing both upload and download speeds by an average of 200%.

LTE Stories April 26, 2017

China hits 836M 4G users as Apple faces app battles with Chinese government

The world’s largest LTE network keeps growing. The Chinese government announced today that the country now has 836M 4G users.

LTE Stories January 31, 2017

These days, the SIM could be an embedded virtual one instead ...

These days, the SIM could be an embedded virtual one instead …

Apple has been toying with LTE-enabled MacBooks for many years. It even created a prototype MacBook Pro with a SIM slot and cellular antenna way back in 2007.

These days, doing so would be far neater, the latest Apple patent showing how the antenna could be hidden within the hinge mechanism, and an embedded virtual SIM could eliminate the physical one illustrated above. While the company has so far argued that using an iPhone’s WiFi hotspot or carrying an iPad provide plenty of options for mobile Internet use, the threat of competition from LTE-capable Windows laptops might just provide the nudge needed to change Apple’s mind …

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LTE Stories May 25, 2016

apple-sim

Earlier this week it was reported that an upcoming MacBook Pro refresh would bring a thinner design, Touch ID support, and an OLED touch bar above the keyboard. One of the longstanding requests by MacBook users, however, has been an option for cellular connectivity and now it looks like we might be one step closer to that coming to fruition. As noted by PatentlyApple, Apple has recently been granted a patent for a MacBook with cellular connectivity.

This isn’t the first time we’ve heard whispers that Apple is working on MacBook with cellular connectivity. In 2011, a MacBook Pro with 3G connectivity and a SIM card slot from 2007 was put up for auction on eBay with the seller claiming it was an unreleased prototype model, but is it still possible that Apple is considering finally adding the feature?

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LTE Stories April 21, 2016

iPhone-6-board-teardown

Bloomberg reports that Qualcomm shares have dropped after the company’s CEO hinted that its biggest customer could switch to a rival supplier for future orders. Reading between the lines, the speculation is that its biggest customer is Apple (Samsung is the only other company close to holding that title) and that a switch to Qualcomm’s rival means Apple’s is considering Intel for LTE modem chips in the iPhone 7:

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LTE Stories February 12, 2016

beyond-5g

Verizon began lab-testing its 5G network last year, aiming to carry out the first real-world tests this year, and AT&T has now announced that it will be doing the same. The company seems even more optimistic than Verizon, which estimated 5G speeds some 30-50 times faster than LTE.

We expect 5G to deliver speeds 10-100 times faster than today’s average 4G LTE connections. Customers will see speeds measured in gigabits per second, not megabits. For reference, at one gigabit per second, you can download a TV show in less than 3 seconds. 

Don’t get too excited just yet, though, as there are a couple of small hurdles to be overcome first …

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LTE Stories December 18, 2015

DSC_3401

Apple is already facing one class action lawsuit alleging that customers were unknowingly using up substantial amounts of mobile data, and it now faces a second.

The issue at stake in this new suit is that the iPhone 5/5s could silently switch from Wi-Fi to LTE under some circumstances, resulting in mobile data usage even when the phone was on Wi-Fi. This was fixed for Verizon users back in September 2012, but law firm Hagens Berman Sobol Shapiro LLP claims that Apple didn’t fix it for AT&T users until more than two years later.

According to the complaint, filed in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California in San Jose, Apple knew about the defect “almost immediately,” yet failed to fix it for AT&T wireless subscribers for years, and did not even disclose the defect. The defect affected all versions of iOS 6 and 7 and was only resolved with the release of iOS 8.1 in October 2014.

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LTE Stories November 2, 2015

4g-lte-cellspot

John Legere took to Twitter in a surprisingly short and subdued Tweetstorm just a short while ago to announce a new move the ‘Uncarrier’ is making this week. Ahead of its Uncarrier X event, T-Mo’s extraverted chief announced that the wireless carrier is now offering a personal 4G LTE CellSpot to any Simple Choice customer who wants one…

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LTE Stories October 1, 2015

9to5Toys Last Call: iPad Air Wi-FI + LTE $300, iPhone 6 Battery Case $29, UE Roll Bluetooth Speaker $90, more

Keep up with the best gear and deals on the web by signing up for the 9to5Toys Newsletter. Also, be sure to check us out on: TwitterRSS FeedFacebookGoogle+ and Safari push notifications.

Today’s can’t miss deals:

Last Call Updates:

App Store Gorgeous Games for $1 Sale: Tengami, Superbrothers, KAMI, Icebreaker, Out There, many more

Apple iPad Air 16GB Wi-Fi + Cellular (AT&T or Verizon) for $300 shipped (Reg. $529)

Apple iPad Air 2 Wi-Fi: 16GB $380 shipped (Reg. $499), 64GB $490 shipped (Reg. $599)

Lenmar MAVEN iPhone 6 MFi Apple-Certified 3,000mAh Battery Case $29 shipped (Orig. $100), more

UE ROLL 360 Bluetooth Speaker (all colors): $90 shipped (Reg. $100)

Get a no-contract iPhone 6s from Boost Mobile for just $450 shipped (Orig. $649)

More new gear from today:

Daily Deals: FitDesk v2.0 Exercise Bike w/ Massage Bar $205, SanDisk Ultra 32GB Micro USB/USB 3.0 Flash Drive $11, more

More deals still alive:

Free PS Plus Games for October: Super Meat Boy, Broken Age, Kickbeat, more

Free Xbox Live Gold Games for October: Valiant Hearts, The Walking Dead, more

Networking: ZyXEL AV500 Powerline $25 shipped (Reg. $50+), travel routers, more

New products & more

TiVo makes the DVR sexy with 4K content, AirPlay and one-click commercial skipping

LTE Stories September 18, 2015

T-Mobile starts selling Apple’s new iPad mini 4 w/ LTE for $0 down

Competitively pricing Apple’s new tablet, T-Mobile has opened up orders on the LTE-enabled models of the iPad mini 4. Pricing starts at $529 full retail, with $0 down finance options available to well-qualified buyers. From today, customers can order the latest 4G-capable mini from T-Mobile’s online store in all three colors and storage capacities.

16GB – $529.99 full retail – $0 down + $22.08 per month 64GB – $629.99 full retail – $99.99 down + $22.08 per month 128GB – $729.99 full retail – $199.99 down + $22.08 per month

Customers buying the iPad from T-Mobile will be able to take advantage of the carrier’s tablet data plan which — for $10 per month — matches the data on their smartphone plan up to 5GB per month. What’s more, customers will get the usual Un-carrier perks of being able to access 4G LTE in Canada and Mexico, unlimited data and texting in 145 countries abroad and get unlimited music streaming on cellular including Apple Music for subscribers.

If you’d rather pick one up from a brick-and-mortar store, they’ll be on physical retail shelves from September 25th, timed alongside the iPhone 6s and 6s Plus launch.

LTE Stories September 10, 2015

TMO11443_IPhone_HomePage_Marquee_Desktop_PreReg

T-Mobile really wants you to buy your iPhone 6s from the company, offering you the 16GB model for a total payment of just $524 on its 18-month JUMP program – a discount of $125 off the normal price of $649. You pay just $20/month for 18 months, at the end of which you can either hand back the phone and walk away, or pay $164 more to keep it. T-Mobile has described this as special introductory pricing which “won’t last long,” but hasn’t given a specific expiry date.

The company also promises you won’t be locked to the T-Mobile network if you’re unhappy with its coverage – which will be notably better for iPhone 6s users. T-Mobile’s Extended Range LTE operates on the 700MHz spectrum, which Apple is supporting for the first time in the iPhone 6s, and is around four times better at penetrating walls to give stronger signals inside buildings …  expand full story

LTE Stories September 3, 2015

9to5Toys Last Call: iPad Air w/ LTE $300, iOS 9/Swift 2 Course Developer Bundle $49, 1Password for Mac $35, more

Keep up with the best gear and deals on the web by signing up for the 9to5Toys Newsletter. Also, be sure to check us out on: TwitterRSS FeedFacebookGoogle+ and Safari push notifications.

Today’s can’t miss deals:

Last Call Updates:

App Store Free App of the Week: Flick Kick Football ($2 value)

Apple iPad Air 16GB Wi-Fi + Cellular (AT&T or Verizon) for $300 shipped (Reg. $529)

All-Inclusive iOS 9 & Swift 2 Course Developer Bundle: $49 (Orig. $398)

1Password secure password manager for Mac: $35 or $28 w/ .edu (Reg. $50)

11-inch MacBook Air 1.6GHz/4GB/128GB (newest): $730 shipped (Reg. $899)

13-inch Retina MacBook Pro w/ Force Touch (newest) 2.7GHz/8GB/256GB: $1,280 shipped (Reg. $1,499)

13.3-inch MacBook Air (early 2014) 1.7GHz/8GB/512GB: $1,249 shipped (Orig. $1,849)

Apple AirPort Express Dual-Band 802.11n Wireless Router (refurbished): $50 shipped (Orig. $99)

Giveaway: $400 Belkin WeMo bundle including the new Lightify Starter Set, multiple winners

More new gear from today:

JBL’s Pulse 2 Bluetooth speaker takes its lightshow next level, previous gen on sale for $100 (Reg. $150)

More deals still alive:

Twelve South iPad Air/mini cases: BookBook from $35 (Orig. $80), leather SurfacePad $35 (Reg. $70), more

Incase MacBook Backpacks 50% off in multiple colors w/ free shipping: Cargo $40 (Reg. $80), Staple $30 (Reg. $60)

New products & more:

Polaroid’s latest pocket-sized Snap cam instantly prints photos with no ink

Review: Tucker and Bloom’s East to West XL Messenger Bag goes big to handle all your gear

Amazon now offers money back to Prime members after their first Dash button purchase

LTE Stories August 31, 2015

T-Mobile to clamp down on network abusers, booting them down to lowest Simple Choice plan

T-Mobile has announced that it’s going to seriously clamp down on any users using unauthorized methods to get around its tethering cap. Those caught using more data than they should be on the highest tier, unlimited Simple Choice plan will be warned to stop, before being moved down to the entry-level plan. This move is aimed specifically at smartphone users who deliberately break T-Mo’s terms and conditions using workarounds to conceal their tethering usage.

The magenta carrier published an updated FAQ page on its support site stating that some customers have been blowing way past the 7GB tethering limit on the highest Simple Choice plan, some using as much as 2TB (2000GB) of data on their mobile plan. Its biggest concern is the experience created for others. With people using the network so heavily, it can ruin the network performance for everyone else. The carrier has developed software to detect those using workarounds and will initially warn users. If they carry on abusing the network, then they get moved on to a plan with just 1GB data (including tethering).

We’re first warning these customers that they’re illegally using more data than they bought. We hope folks will stop on their own so they can keep their current plan. These customers are on an unlimited 4G LTE smartphone plan that includes a set amount of Smartphone Mobile HotSpot data, but they’re using workarounds to make their tethering look like smartphone usage which helps them use significantly more 4G LTE tethering than their plan includes.

Once they’re on a plan with a set amount of 4G LTE data, it won’t matter what method they use for Smartphone Mobile HotSpot. Once they use their 4G LTE data bucket, they’ll continue to be able to use data at reduced speeds and still never worry about overages.

T-Mobile will start communicating these changes with its customers from today and notes that only a very small percentage of its customers have been discovered to be concealing their tethering. Despite it being a very small fraction of the customer base, it has a “disproportionately negative impact” on the experience for everyone else.

LTE Stories August 17, 2015

AT&T enhances GoPhone plans to support 4GB data in Canada & Mexico

National carriers across the US have been adding features that make it easier to use their service in Mexico and Canada as a growing trend, and today AT&T has announced enhancements to its pre-paid GoPhone plans to include 4GB of high speed data use in Canada and Mexico as well as the United States. The new AT&T GoPhone feature goes into effect on August 21st and is supported on the carrier’s $60 pre-paid plan without making any changes.

In addition to 4GB of 4G LTE data for use across North America where available, the GoPhone plans include unlimited talk and text in the US, Canada, and Mexico as well. AT&T’s $60 GoPhone plan is reduced to $55/month for customers using the carrier’s Auto Refill automatic payment feature.

For post-paid subscribers, AT&T supports international calling and texting to Mexico, Canada, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands on its 15GB and 20GB Mobile Share Value plans that it simplified over the weekend. More similarly, T-Mobile enhanced its own plans last month to support 4G LTE data use in addition to text and calls in Canada and Mexico without international roaming fees.

LTE Stories July 3, 2015

9to56SBoard

Our look at the upcoming “iPhone 6S” continues today with a discussion of new internal components that are expected to be inside Apple’s latest smartphone. In addition to expected changes such as a Force Touch display, upgraded camera system, and new Qualcomm LTE chip for up to twice-as-fast data speeds, the next iPhone will likely include updated NFC hardware, fewer and more efficient chips, and new flash memory that may nonetheless remain at a 16GB minimum capacity.

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LTE Stories July 2, 2015

Mark Gurman talks to CNBC about the leaked iPhone 6S, Apple Music, and more

In case you missed it, Mark appeared on CNBC’s “Squawk Alley” earlier today to discuss the leaked iPhone 6S, its numerous changes, and its new Qualcomm chip and double LTE speeds, plus this week’s launch of Apple Music and Beats 1 and what to expect for the future of Apple’s new streaming music service. Watch below:

LTE Stories July 1, 2015

9to5Mac_6S3

One of the main upgrades to the next iPhone’s internals will be a redesigned wireless system featuring a new Qualcomm-made LTE chip, as revealed by images of a prototype iPhone 6S logic board shared by a source. As shown in the image below, the new device will include Qualcomm’s MDM9635M chip, also known as the ‘9X35’ Gobi modem platform. This new chip promises significant performance improvements over the “9X25” chip found inside of the current iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus, capable of delivering up to twice the theoretical LTE download speeds…

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LTE Stories March 30, 2015

T-Mobile introduces new next-gen coverage map w/ customer data updated biweekly

T-Mobile has today unveiled what it hopes will be the next-generation of network maps, breathing new life into the carrier coverage maps of old. T-Mobile says that its new “Next-Gen Network Map” is the industry’s first crowd-sourced map, and reflects “near real-time customer experiences.”

LTE Stories March 23, 2015

9to5Toys Last Call: Time Capsule 3TB refurb $299, iPad mini 2 128GB LTE $430, JayBird Bluetooth in-ears $119, more

Keep up with the best gear and deals on the web by signing up for the 9to5Toys Newsletter. Also, be sure to check us out on: TwitterRSS FeedFacebookGoogle+ and Safari push notifications.

Today’s can’t miss deals:

Last Call Updates:

Apple’s refurbished 3TB Time Capsule drops to $299 shipped (25% off original)

Daily Deals: iPad mini 2 128GB LTE $430, ZAGGkeys iPad Air keyboard case $29, Toshiba Canvio 1TB HDD $50, more

JayBird BlueBuds X Sport Bluetooth Headphones $119 shipped (Reg. $170)

Exclusive: Incase 13-inch MacBook Air Hardshell Cases for $25 shipped (50% off)

Small States Review: Grado’s GR10e in-ear headphones hit every note, $299 giveaway

More new gear from today:

Amazon’s best selling HDTV: LG Electronics 55-Inch 1080p 120Hz LED for $500 shipped (Reg. $800)

More deals still alive:

Modern Combat 5: Blackout for iOS goes free for the first time (Reg. $4+)

iTunes Free App of the Week: Dark Echo ($2 value)

Apple extends deeper discounts to its refurbished store: AirPort Extreme $129, 13″ MacBook Air from $719, more

Apple laptops up to 25% off: MacBook Air from $750 w/ .edu, Pro w/ Retina display from $1,100 w/ .edu

Updated Apple TV pricing gets passed down as players refurbished by Apple hit a new low of $59

New products & more:

Atari’s new Fit app for iOS and Android rewards users w/ classic arcade games

LTE Stories January 14, 2015

Apple LTE Phil Schiller

In response to Apple taking Ericsson to court over wireless patent licensing, the Swedish telecommunications company has filed a lawsuit in Texas that seeks the court to determine whether its licensing offer to Apple is fair. Ericsson told the court that it has been attempting to reach a new licensing agreement with Apple for over two years, but negotiations have failed to result in a deal. The patents in question are related to wireless LTE technologies that Apple uses in products like the iPhone and iPad. expand full story

LTE Stories January 13, 2015

lte

Apple has filed a lawsuit against Ericsson over the licensing fees for technology patents related to LTE wireless connectivity, Reuters reported today. According to Apple, the company has not infringed any of the patents in question, which it says are not essential to the LTE networking standard.

Ericsson calculates its royalty fees based on the price of a complete handset rather than only the component that integrates the patented technology.

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