Blog Post

As we expected, no T-Mobile iPhone today, but Apple promises devices in 2013

Stay on Top of Enterprise Technology Trends

Get updates impacting your industry from our GigaOm Research Community
Join the Community!

Not to brag, but we called it: No T-Mobile iPhone emerged today, despite several speculative reports to the contrary. Instead, T-Mo’s corporate parent Deutsche Telekom made the rather wishy-washy statement on Thursday that T-Mobile would start selling some kind of Apple(s aapl) product next year.

“T-Mobile has entered into an agreement with Apple to bring products to market together next year. Additional details will be made available at a later date,” a T-Mobile spokesman said in a statement.

Update: T-Mobile CEO John Legere has confirmed that the iPhone will be among those Apple devices.

That lines up exactly with what we’ve been saying for the last year. T-Mobile’s network isn’t yet ready to support the iPhone or iPad yet, but it will be in the near future when T-Mo completes its network overhaul. And once that overhaul is complete, Apple will jump at the chance. T-Mobile may be the smallest nationwide operator in the U.S. but it still has a customer base larger than population of most countries.

The big question is how far along in its overhaul T-Mobile will be before the Apple deigns it iPhone ready. In the next six months T-Mobile will likely complete the reconfiguration of HSPA+ on the 1900 MHz PCS band, which will make its 3G network iPhone compatible nationwide (today only its 2G service works on the iPhone). Or Apple may want to wait for T-Mobile’s LTE network, which the carrier plans to launch in the latter half of 2013. If Apple does wait for LTE, that almost certainly means T-Mobile will have to wait for the next generation of iOS devices, whatever they may be.

Either way, once T-Mobile is done with its network upgrades, all generations of the iPhone and iPad will be optimized for its networks, leaving no obstacle for a long and fruitful Apple-T-Mobile relationship.

8 Responses to “As we expected, no T-Mobile iPhone today, but Apple promises devices in 2013”

  1. Kevin Fitchard

    Hmm, I think you may be getting caught up on the headline, MeToMe, which on revisiting is a bit confusing. I added “today” in there to clear up the confusion. But apart from that, I’m saying the same thing as BW and the other stories. But I’m also pointing out that all of these pubs were reporting rumors that T-Mobile was going to get an iPhone this week. They’ve all conveniently forgotten about those stories.