Contrary to industry expectations, Apple introduced the iPhone 4S, an incremental update of the existing iPhone (News - Alert) 4.
The digital industry was anticipating the launch of iPhone 5, an entirely new model supporting 4G.
Market intelligence provider IHS (News - Alert) iSuppli had shared its outlook in July saying that the new iPhone being introduced by Apple in 2011 likely would not include the 4G technology known as Long Term Evolution (LTE (News - Alert)).
IHS expects that Apple will launch an LTE-capable iPhone 5 when an affordable chipset solution allowing a thinner form factor is available. Apple (News - Alert) is likely to introduce the iPhone 5 in late 2012, or in mid-2013, according to IHS.
IHS analysts feel that Apple’s incremental approach is a right decision. 3G services offer adequate speed for iPhone 4 to perform. Considering the current spectrum and uplink speed constraints for LTE, there is no appreciable benefits to adopting LTE and hence iPhone 5 with 4G.
“As Apple always does, the company selected features for the iPhone 4 that are designed to deliver a superior customer experience, rather than to provide technology for technology’s sake,” said Francis Sideco, senior principal analyst, wireless communications, for IHS, in a statement.
“Because of this, Apple declined to offer an LTE-enabled iPhone that would have been more expensive, larger and more power hungry—and instead opted to introduce a device that delivers nearly the same wireless data speed, but with a superior user experience,” Sideco added.
Apple’s iPhone 4S comes with a slew of updates, including a faster processor, a voice-operated intelligent assistant, an even better camera, and over-the-air update capabilities.
Meanwhile, Sprint announced it would join telecom majors AT&T and Verizon as the third major carrier to offer Apple’s ground-breaking smartphone, meaning more choices for users.
Rajani Baburajan is a contributing editor for TMCnet. To read more of Rajani's articles, please visit her columnist page.
Edited by Jennifer Russell