iSuppli: 4G LTE iPhone Would Be More Expensive To Make

News | Thursday July 7 2011 7:03 PM | Comments (0) Tags: , , , , ,

delayed to fall this year, there have been some speculations that this could give Apple enough time to add support for 4G LTE networks.
However, there are various reasons that Apple is unlikely to launch a 4G LTE iPhone this fall and iSuppli, electronics market research firm believes that cost could be one of the reasons.
Back in April, Apple ’s Chief Operating Officer Tim Cook had stated that the first generation of LTE chipsets force a lot of design compromises with the handset, and some of those we are just not willing to make.
At that time, Will Strauss, President of wireless chip tracker Forward Concepts pointed out that Apple was looking for a solution where chips support 4G and 3G on a single chip so that the 4G LTE iPhone is as thin or thinner than
and it doesn’t consume too much battery life.
According to Strauss, chipmakers like Qualcomm, ST Ericcson and Intel are expected to launch the next generation chips that support 4G and 3G on a single chip only towards the end of this year or early next year, which would meet Apple ’s requirement.
Folks at iSuppli have published a report, which concludes that a 4G LTE iPhone would be significantly more expensive to make than the current iPhone 4 model. For example, HTC added $39.75 to the cost of the ThunderBolt smartphone by going LTE.
“It remains to be seen whether the next Apple iPhone set for introduction in September will support 4G LTE,” said Wayne Lam, senior analyst for IHS. “However, if it does, two things are clear. First, the iPhone ‘s minuscule printed circuit board (PCB) will have to grow in size in order to support the first-generation LTE baseband processor as well as all the supporting chipset. Second, the next iPhone ‘s BOM value certainly will increase substantially compared to the iPhone 4 if LTE is implemented in the same manner as in the HTC Thunderbolt.”
According to iSuppli, the BOM (bill of material) of a
would rise to $211.10, a jump of 23.2% if Apple used the same components as HTC. iSuppli goes on to add:
The SnapDragon MSM8960, is a successor to the MSM8655 used in the ThunderBolt that combines LTE, EVDO and HSPA into a single chip. This new device not only eliminates the multiple baseband chipset approach employed by theThunderBolt, but also would reduce the size and cost of making an LTE-enabled iPhone 5 compared to the ThunderBolt.
The other issue is that the implementation of 4G LTE networks has not yet matured. AT&T and Verizon are expected to complete the rollout of their 4G LTE network nationwide only by 2013.
So all these reasons indicate that it is very unlikely that Apple will launch a 4G LTE in 2012.
if it doesn’t support 4G LTE networks or will you buy a 4G smartphone like HTC ThundeBolt if 4G network is available in your area? Let us know in the comments.

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