Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Verizon and AT&T to sell 4G LTE iPad 3s: report

Verizon and AT&T will sell 4G LTE versions of the iPad 3, according to a Tuesday report in the Wall Street Journal. It's not something that hasn't been discussed before, but a report by the WSJ is pretty near confirmation.

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It's unclear if Sprint (likely) or T-Mobile (unlikely) will sell versions of the iPad 3. Sprint already sells the iPhone 4 and 4S, but T-Mobile has no iDevices at all. Sprint doesn't have LTE yet, but will by mid-year, and T-Mobile has announced no plans to move to LTE, but continues to advertise its HSPA+ technology as 4G.

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Assuming Sprint sells a version of the iPad 3, which we believe is likely, it will be at a significant disadvantage vs. Verizon and AT&T. We doubt that Apple will build WiMax technology into an iPad 3, since Sprint is moving to LTE, and those initial iPad 3s will only have CDMA speeds, then.

It's possible that Apple could put the hardware necessary to support Sprint's LTE into the iPad 3, such that when a Sprint LTE network is detected in range of the device, it will switch to it, but it is unclear if they will do so.

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