T-Mobile Says ‘Ask Apple’ on iPhone

Posted by at 11:23 am on January 20, 2011

T-Mobile during its morning media event today in New York City made allusions to possible iPhone plans. Carrier officials when asked about the option in the post-exclusive US environment didn’t confirm or deny plans but instead told the media to “ask Apple.” The need to adapt to T-Mobile’s 1,700MHz 3G band was cited as one obstacle, although T-Mobile made allusions to 3G chipsets having “evolved” to support many more cellular frequencies and thus covering both AT&T and T-Mobile users.

“We’re not part of the [iPhone] chipset today,” president Philipp Humm said. “But we have chipsets which support five, or up to 10 spectrum bands in the market, so we should expect there will be more degrees of freedom going forward.”

Four- or five-band 3G chipsets are still rare in the industry. Apple uses a pentaband radio in the iPhone 4 but uses the fifth band for an NTT DoCoMo frequency that it has yet to officially support, not T-Mobile. Nokia has been the most common adopter of pentaband hardware and has equipped at least the E7 and N8 with 3G that can work on AT&T, T-Mobile USA and most international carriers.

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