Apple Testing iPhone for T-Mobile USA

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BGR provides photos of an iPhone prototype that supports T-Mobile USA's 3G service.

Thats right, youre looking at photos of an iPhone prototype with T-Mobile USA 3G bands. The actual internal model is N94, and if you remember, the Verizon model is N92 while the standard GSM variant is N90. We have verified that the phone itself is running a test version of Apples iOS, much like the one we saw in those videos from Vietnam, and it includes internal Apple test apps like Radar and Apples employee directory app.

The T-Mobile US network uses different frequencies than AT&T's, requiring different hardware to support. It's not clear what this will mean given that AT&T is planning to acquire T-Mobile USA, though that transaction will take some time before it goes into effect. In the meanwhile, T-Mobile continues to operate as an independent carrier in the U.S.

Tag: bgr.com

Top Rated Comments

DeathChill Avatar
127 months ago
Wouldn't it be nice for you guys if iPhone 5 came out on every carrier?
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
KnightWRX Avatar
127 months ago
This would make a possible model for Videotron and Wind Mobile in Canada and probably give Apple more carrier options in other countries also. It makes sense in a non-US Centric view.

And looking at "carrier acquisitions" here, Rogers acquired Fido ages ago, yet even though the networks worked on the same GSM bands, they still haven't merged. An AT&T purchase of T-mobile would probably take years for a merge to even occur, and a few technology changes. AT&T isn't going to retrofit T-mobile's network and change their frequencies, requiring all the existing customer base to change phones.

So even in a US Centric view, it makes a lot of sense. Basically, don't let an AT&T acquisition of T-mobile trick you into thinking this is a false rumor.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Adidas Addict Avatar
127 months ago
The USA mobile networks are such a random mish mash of technology and frequency. I can't believe they have existed so long in this way, talk about overcomplicating things for no reason.
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
deannnnn Avatar
127 months ago
Maybe they're testing this so that when AT&T and T-Mo combine, future iPhones will be able to use the T-Mobile 3G bands, even though the phone would still be exclusive to AT&T (and of course, Verizon).
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
chrmjenkins Avatar
127 months ago
The Verizon iPhone's radio actually supports the AWS 3G bands. This phone could be as simple as a Verizon iPhone with SIM and custom firmware. It's also possible the antenna bands are different too. Still, the radio wouldn't have to be something not in a shipping apple iPhone.
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Buschmaster Avatar
127 months ago
Is it possible that they would make a phone that would cover both AT&T's and T-Mobile's bands? AT&T could really combat the coverage problems they've had on the west coast with that, correct?
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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