Light Reading
AT&T's M2M chief says the future of tablets is LTE, and you can bet he's hoping Apple fuels the trend with a 4G iPad this week

AT&T: Most iPads Stay Connected

Sarah Reedy
LR Mobile News Analysis
Sarah Reedy, Senior Editor
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
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
Is your network built on 'The Old IP,' or are you part of 'The New IP' revolution?
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Innovating Access Technology With G.fast

10|1|14   |   3.42   |   (0) comments


Exploring the potential of G.fast technology from the point of view of the Broadband Forum, Huawei – and an end-user.
LRTV Documentaries
A Cultural Shift for an OTT World

9|26|14   |   01:41   |   (3) comments


Telcos need to embrace a new approach to partnerships if they are to generate extra revenues quickly and give customers what they want.
LRTV Documentaries
New Skills Needed as Telecom, IT Collide

9|26|14   |   4:07   |   (1) comment


As telecom and IT collide, new technologies are emerging, new skills are needed and new opportunities for women are arising.
UBB Forum News
Do IP Networks Need An Overhaul?

9|25|14   |   02:01   |   (0) comments


As traffic levels ramp, do IP networks need new technologies and topologies?
LRTV Documentaries
Sprint Wields Its Influence in the Valley

9|25|14   |   3:09   |   (11) comments


Anne-Louise Kardas, Sprint's connection to startups in the Valley, explains how telcos can be innovative and find new opportunities with partners.
LRTV Documentaries
SDN, NFV & The Future of XO's Network

9|25|14   |   3:47   |   (1) comment


XO Communications COO Don MacNeil explains how cloud, SDN and NFV are altering its network requirements as well as changing data centers of the future.
UBB Forum News
The OTT Conundrum

9|24|14   |   01:39   |   (0) comments


What is holding back prosperous partnerships between telcos and the OTT players?
LRTV Documentaries
Putting Broadband to Work

9|24|14   |   01:26   |   (0) comments


High-speed broadband network rollout is key to telco strategies, but it's what happens after the network is built that counts.
Light Reedy
Light Reading's Women in Telecom Recap

9|24|14   |   0:55   |   (4) comments


Our first Women in Telecom breakfast was a huge success, and we hope you'll join us in London for the next event on November 6.
UBB Forum News
Monetizing Ultra-Broadband

9|24|14   |   01:43   |   (2) comments


Ultra-broadband networks need to be built, with fiber-to-the-premises the ultimate goal, but they need to be monetized, too.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Sales Director of INIT on Plug & Play Switch Devices

9|19|14   |   3:21   |   (0) comments


INIT Italy uses both the Huawei S5700 and S7700 series switches for the campus LAN environment. Sales Director Andrea Curti says their company chose these Huawei devices over others because of their performance, flexible scalability and plug-and-play features.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Saudi Arabia Upgrades Vocational Training System

9|19|14   |   3:31   |   (0) comments


The Technical and Vocational Training Corporation (TVTC) has 100,000 students, 150 government-owned institutions and oversees 1000 private institutes. The CIO of TVTC explains that Huawei devices have allowed them to manage multiple datacenters using just one software program, scientifically tracking the progress of students and teachers, saving them millions.
Upcoming Live Events
October 29, 2014, New York City
November 6, 2014, Santa Clara
November 11, 2014, Atlanta, GA
December 2, 2014, New York City
December 3, 2014, New York City
December 9-10, 2014, Reykjavik, Iceland
June 9-10, 2015, Chicago, IL
Infographics
Half of the world's population will be connected to the Internet by 2017, but not just by smartphones and desktops.
Hot Topics
Facebook Pokes Around LTE Direct
Sarah Reedy, Senior Editor, 9/25/2014
Is Redbox Instant Shutting Down?
Mari Silbey, Independent Technology Editor, 9/30/2014
Comcast Turns Off Streampix
Mari Silbey, Independent Technology Editor, 9/26/2014
SoftBank Eyes a DreamWorks Buy – Report
Sarah Reedy, Senior Editor, 9/29/2014
Telecom Sector 'Its Own Worst Enemy' – Kroes
Ray Le Maistre, Editor-in-chief, 10/2/2014
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed