Sprint Could Support 4G iPad (But Doesn't Yet)

Sprint Corp. (NYSE: S) could support the new Apple Inc. (Nasdaq: AAPL) Long Term Evolution (LTE) iPad in the 4G markets it plans to launch mid-year. (See Apple Intros First 4G LTE iPad.)

Sprint plans to launch the faster data download technology in six U.S. cities by mid-year -- including Atlanta, Baltimore, Dallas, Houston, Kansas City and San Antonio -- on its 1900MHz PCS band. These should be online by the early summer with markets in the surrounding areas to come. (See Sprint Plans LTE for Baltimore, Kansas City and Sprint's 4G LTE Texan Triangle.)

The technical specifications listed for the Verizon version of the 4G iPad say that it will run Verizon's LTE over its 700MHz C-Band spectrum, but lists radio support for 1900MHz too. (See Mapping LTE: AT&T & Verizon's 4G Footprints.)

Sprint supports the CDMA iPhone 4 and 4S. But there was no mention of Sprint in Apple's 4G iPad announcement. Apple only listed AT&T and Verizon as its 4G partners when it announced the new iPad. (See Sprint Sees iPhone Subsidies as Necessary Evil.)

If that could change over time, such as it did with the later launch of the Sprint iPhone, the operator isn't telling yet. "At this time, Sprint is not a carrier for Apple's iPad products," says a Sprint spokesman via email. "We have nothing further to announce at this time."

— Dan Jones, Site Editor, Light Reading Mobile

joset01 12/5/2012 | 5:40:06 PM
re: Sprint Could Support 4G iPad (But Doesn't Yet)

That's a piece of good news for the carriers that have it. No subsidiary for the iPad. Just pure profit on the data plan revenue.

joset01 12/5/2012 | 5:40:02 PM
re: Sprint Could Support 4G iPad (But Doesn't Yet)

I think you're going to be waiting awhile for subsidy changes. My impression is that the big two see them as a way to use their weight against smaller carriers.

krishanguru143 12/5/2012 | 5:40:02 PM
re: Sprint Could Support 4G iPad (But Doesn't Yet)

I just wish the US carriers would separate the plans from the subsidies.  Subsidies could still be offered, but what you pay each month for that subsidy is a separate line item.  This is what the FCC/DoJ should have demanded from AT&T.  That would have dramatically reshaped the wireless marketplace.  Now you could buy an unlocked phone and have cheaper monthly rates rather than a brick at the end of the two years.  If you keep a phone longer than the contract, you are paying on a subsidy that no longer exists.


Does the Qualcomm baseband chip even support LTE on 1900Mhz though?

krishanguru143 12/5/2012 | 5:40:00 PM
re: Sprint Could Support 4G iPad (But Doesn't Yet)

It will never change, that is why the DoJ/FCC should have used it as a condition on the T-Mobile deal.  Get AT&T change the subsidies policies and Verizon would follow suit and then Sprint.  It would have made the entire space more competitive and could have ended those exclusive handset deals.  As long as the phone would work on another network on the supported technologies, the phone could be bought unlocked and moved to a different carrier.  Someone could walk in and buy a CDMA iPhoney and then activate it on Cricket, U.S. Cellular, MetroPCS, etc.


I couldn't find anything that said the Qualcomm baseband chip in the New iPad supported LTE on the Sprint bands. I couldn't find anything about any of the bands that it supports.  They just state it supports GSM, LTE, UMTS, HSPDA+, EV-DO Rev A & B, etc.

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