Light Reading

AT&T: Most iPads Stay Connected

Sarah Thomas
3/6/2012
50%
50%

If there's one feature on the next iPad AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T) is crossing its fingers for, you can bet it's Long Term Evolution (LTE) 4G Connectivity.

That's because the carrier has already been successful in selling data plans for the 3G version of the Apple Inc. (Nasdaq: AAPL) tablet, according to Glenn Lurie, AT&T's head of emerging devices. And, most consumers are setting their monthly, prepaid data plans to automatic renewal, providing AT&T with an extra revenue stream of at least $15 per month, he said.

The carrier didn't break out its iPad sales for its last quarter, but said it sold 571,000 branded computing devices, which includes connected tablets and air cards. AT&T CEO Randall Stephenson also noted that tablets drove its prepaid adds of 717,000 for the fourth quarter. (See AT&T Banks on Broadband, Cries for Spectrum.)

"The future [of tablets] is all connected," Lurie said in a MWC interview, where he dispelled the notion that most tablets sold today are Wi-Fi only. (See Trends for 2012: Connected Devices and Apple: the Numbers Behind the (Huge) Numbers.)

"The Wi-Fi only tablet is a half device," Lurie continued. "People thought they'd use it every once in a while, but it's turned into all the time."

An LTE iPad ahead?
Lurie admitted that these network-connected tablets are eating up a lot of data, but said he's not worried about the traffic as most future tablets will be connected to its data-centric LTE network.

For the user, a 4G LTE iPad would likely be much faster than the current 3G iPad 2. The current 3G iPad tops out at average data rates of around 1.5-Mbit/s. In a recent drive test of AT&T's new LTE network average, Signals Research found downlink speeds of 23.6Mbit/s and a peak data rate of 61.1Mbit/s. (See AT&T Hits 15 LTE Markets, Adds Another Tablet.)

AT&T launched its LTE network in the second half of September 2011. So users will only get the 4G LTE coverage in 28 markets at present if an LTE iPad is on the horizon. AT&T, however, has upgraded its high-speed packet access-plus (HSPA+) 3G network -- now marketed as 4G -- in the meantime, so users could get something like 5Mbit/s averages on download as a fallback. (See Mapping LTE: AT&T & Verizon's 4G Footprints.) Whether or not the iPad will be amongst those 4G tablets, however, is the question de jour. Apple has an event scheduled tomorrow where it could announce its next version of the tablet. The rumor mill is in full swing, with many suggesting LTE will be amongst the included features, and an equal number saying Apple will pass on the new network. (See LTE iPad Coming to Japan? and LTE iPad Coming Soon? )

AT&T is not betting solely on the iPad, however. (OK, well mostly.) It currently has one other LTE tablet, the Pantech Co. Ltd. Element tablet that Lurie said is selling well. AT&T has a great relationship with Android OEMs and Google (Nasdaq: GOOG), Lurie added, and is running a promotion for tablets bundled with smartphones. The judicious M2M chief said he's also excited about Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq: MSFT)'s Windows 8 tablets and believes BlackBerry is still a "great partner" and player in tablets.

— Sarah Reedy, Senior Reporter, Light Reading Mobile

(2)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View        ADD A COMMENT
Flook
50%
50%
Flook,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 5:40:21 PM
re: AT&T: Most iPads Stay Connected


OK, I'm guessing the new iPad will also be hi-def....only have to wait a couple of hours and we'll know.

malcolm111
50%
50%
malcolm111,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 5:40:09 PM
re: AT&T: Most iPads Stay Connected


AT&T is also offering tablets from Samsung and HTC with LTE as well - which is why getting LTE into the new IPad was so important.

Flash Poll
From The Founder
Network architects aiming to upgrade their networks to support agile, open, virtualized services in the 21st century need to consider new criteria when choosing between technology suppliers.
Live Streaming Video
BTE 2015 Sponsor Keynote: HP
Dr. Prodip Sen, CTO, Network Functions Virtualization, HP
LRTV Custom TV
The New IP Goes Mobile With vEPC

7|2|15   |   1:12   |   (0) comments


Heavy Reading's Gabriel Brown discusses results of a Light Reading survey sponsored by Brocade that shows a clear commitment by mobile operators to move quickly to virtual EPC deployment.
LRTV Custom TV
Making Business Sense of SDN

7|2|15   |   1:42   |   (0) comments


Results of a Brocade-sponsored survey show that CSPs have a clear sense of SDN use cases but are wrestling with the business case. Sterling Perrin of Heavy Reading looks behind the numbers.
LRTV Custom TV
NFV Will Be Here Sooner Than You Think

7|2|15   |   2:22   |   (0) comments


Forget the usual ten-year cycle for new technologies – NFV will be a core part of CSP networks in five years, based on results of a Brocade-sponsored survey, says Heavy Reading's Caroline Chappell.
LRTV Custom TV
The New IP Gains Traction With CSPs

7|2|15   |   1:42   |   (0) comments


Roz Roseboro of Heavy Reading analyzes results of a Light Reading survey sponsored by Brocade showing that CSPs are getting serious about making the transition to the New IP era.
LRTV Custom TV
It's (Real) Time for Analytics

7|2|15   |   1:42   |   (0) comments


Heavy Reading's Jim Hodges looks at how CSPs say they plan to use analytics to deploy new services in real time as part of The New IP, based on results of a survey sponsored by Brocade.
LRTV Documentaries
IoT in Action

6|30|15   |   1:39   |   (7) comments


Two co-workers discuss the benefits of IoT technology.
LRTV Interviews
Ericsson Opens Up on OPNFV

6|30|15   |   14:16   |   (1) comment


Martin Bäckström, VP and head of industry area Datacom at Ericsson, talks to Light Reading founder and CEO Steve Saunders about the emergence of OPNFV, the importance of standards and Ericsson's OPNFV plans.
LRTV Custom TV
NetNumber Founder Discusses NFV/SDN Impact on SP Networks

6|26|15   |   4:15   |   (0) comments


NetNumber Founder Doug Ranalli examines why SPs need a new network infrastructure for service agility. While NFV and SDN are the tools, the old ways of thinking about signaling control are inhibitors. Doug provides his recommendations.
LRTV Custom TV
Orchestrating NFV vCPE Services Across Multivendor Networks

6|26|15   |   5:46   |   (0) comments


Nirav Modi provides an overview of vCPE, the fastest-growing NFV use case, showing how Cyan's Blue Planet orchestrates vCPE services across a multivendor infrastructure to rapidly deliver new managed services for business customers.
LRTV Custom TV
ZTE at LTE Summit Amsterdam 2015

6|26|15   |     |   (0) comments


As one of the leading global telecommunications providers, ZTE presented its cutting-edge technology at LTE World Summit 2015 in Amsterdam. On display at ZTE's booth were the latest R&D achievements in wireless, 5G development, HetNet, deep convergence of FDD and TDD, and RCS/IMD/iSDN/vCN.
LRTV Documentaries
OPNFV Director Opens Up on Women in Tech

6|25|15   |   3:25   |   (0) comments


Heather Kirksey, the director of the OPNFV, gets real about the gender disparity in open source and standards and discusses how we can change both the conversation and the gender dynamics.
LRTV Custom TV
Symantec's Service Provider Security Strategy

6|24|15   |   7:06   |   (0) comments


Didi Dayton explores Symantec's emerging enterprise security strategies for service providers. Highlights include 'killing the password,' self-defense, advanced analytics and adaptive response in a service provider architecture.
Upcoming Live Events
September 16-17, 2015, The Westin Galleria Dallas, Dallas, TX
September 29-30, 2015, The Westin Grand Müchen, Munich, Germany
October 6, 2015, The Westin Peachtree Plaza, Atlanta, GA
October 6, 2015, Westin Peachtree Plaza, Atlanta, GA
October 14-15, 2015, New Orleans Ernest N. Morial Convention Center, New Orleans, LA
All Upcoming Live Events
Infographics
Hot Topics
Staying Productive With My Office-in-a-Bag
Mitch Wagner, West Coast Bureau Chief, Light Reading, 6/25/2015
Who's Feeding Fiber to LinkNYC Hotspots?
Mari Silbey, Senior Editor, Cable/Video, 6/29/2015
Eurobites: Activist Investor Takes Stake in AlcaLu
Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe, 6/30/2015
What's in Your Office-in-a-Bag?
Mitch Wagner, West Coast Bureau Chief, Light Reading, 6/26/2015
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed
Webinar Archive
BETWEEN THE CEOs - Executive Interviews
Casa Systems has been going from strength to strength over the last couple of years. In 2013, it became the first vendor to ship an integrated CCAP device -- the ...
Cedrik Neike, SVP of Global Service Provider, Service Delivery, at Cisco, talks to Light Reading founder and CEO Steve Saunders about solving service provider customer problems in a virtualized, DevOps world, including multivendor support and the future of network procurement.
Cats with Phones