iPhone 5 will support HSPA+ 4G technology

During a presentation at Macworld Asia, China Unicom revealed that, as long and widely rumored, iPhone 5 will support HSPA+ networks.

Japanese IT news site "PC Watch" tells that, Research vice president of China Unicom, Huan Wenliang, told iPhone 5 will support W-CDMA based high-speed data transfer standard HSPA Evolution "HSPA+" (21Mbps) at keynote speech in Macworld Asia 2011.

While HSPA+ is really a 3.5G technology, T-Mobile, AT&T, and now many other carriers have been marketing it as 4G for a while now in order to compete with real 4G networks like Verizon LTE. (Turns out it's easier to print 4G on a box than build out an actual LTE network, go figure?)

It will be interesting to see how an HSPA+ iPhone will be marketed by AT&T. Will Apple let them call it a 4G iPhone?

Source: PC Watch via MacRumors

Andrew Wray

Andrew Wray is a Salt Lake City, Utah based writer who focuses on news, how-tos, and jailbreak. Andrew also enjoys running, spending time with his daughter, and jamming out on his guitar. He works in a management position for Unisys Technical Services, a subsidiary of Unisys Corporation.

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There are 34 comments. Add yours.

B.J. Bumgarner says:

is this the real reason that Verizon is siding with Samsung over the patent law suits? Verizon can't be happy that AT&T will have a faster iPhone.

rdubmu says:

Who cares who data is faster when you can't make a phone call. This is why Verizon shouldn't sweat it.

ricbon says:

could be bad for apple on verizon if you put it in display next to a TRUE LTE device and blows it out the water

fastlane says:

Nobody will give a damn. If they go in to buy an iPhone, they're coming out with an iPhone.

Guest says:

But...what if they get confused and walk out with a Samsung? It has rounded corners!

Daniel says:

It might support HSPA+ but it will certainly not be called a '4G' iPhone 5/4S.

dloveprod says:

Is At&t HSPA+ available in Detroit?

Danny Michel says:

This means the death of the Verizon iPhone for sure

Soto says:

No, iOS 5 is suppose to unite them.

Mark Woods says:

Ya. Sprint is WiMax 4G. Still diferent than LTE though.

Asdollah Mirza says:

As much as I like the white iPhone 5 shown in the picture above, I'm not sure if I like the big question mark on it yet. Maybe it will grow on me :P

Richard Kirk says:

If people won't leave Verizon for faster AT&T data now they probably won't do it for a "4G" version. I know I don't even care if I ever get an LTE phone since I'm on wifi 99% of the time and 4G would only prove to be a worse battery drain.
Besides, what good is AT&T's HSPA+ when you're only able to use 2GB of it a month unless you're grandfathered in? Nobody will be switching for limited data amounts at this point in any event, it will just keep people from leaving AT&T for Verizon maybe.

Danny Michel says:

some people CANT leave, like me

Dev says:

Even if Apple for some odd reason told AT&T "you can't call it a 4G iPhone," AT&T would simply say "the iPhone runs on AT&T's blazing fast 4G network."
To paraphrase Jeff Goldblum: "marketing finds a way."

sarah palin says:

Thanks I will send u a pic only if you are white and American.....hope you like roast beef

Brad Morris says:

As long as it's on the rare side and kinda bloody!

Brad Morris says:

Ahhhh wildlife, and the elusive Alaskan Beaver!

Asdollah Mirza says:

how about white Russians? :P

Brad Morris says:

If HSPA+ supports 21Mbps, the fasts I've seen an Andrid phone go was about 24Mbps, and that's in the BEST conditions. Heck, when I did side by side comparisons of the phone (I'm not sure which one it was as it was by buddy's phone) my iPhone 4 pinged faster than his when doing the Speedtest.net app test, and when loading webpages, the iPhone actually loaded most pages faster.
I must then ask WHY would you NEED to ever have to download something THAT FAST on a freaking phone??? For the most part, everything I've ever needed to do on my iPhone can be done to my satisfaction at current speeds. A few apps would benefit from a bump in speed, like maps and navigation apps, but overall the only thing it's going to do is help you, the customer, get to your data cap faster and start paying butt-raping overage penalties.
I'm not stream Netflix on my iPhone, though I do occasionally watch YouTube clips or videos from news websites, but that's really about it, so I don't really see the need for blazing fast speeds on my iPhone.

StuartV says:

I've gotten as high as 40Mbps down on my Thunderbolt (Verizon Android phone). Often get 25+.
Why do I need it? I have unlimited data and unlimited tethering and I tether my laptop and my WiFi-only tablet to it all the time. And my g/f tethers her iPad to my phone frequently as well. I got a lot of work done last Friday on my laptop, as she drove us for half a day to our weekend destination, by being connected to my Thunderbolt's Hotspot. I only had 3G for a lot of that, but still, the point is, there are plenty of reasons to have a phone that can do 40Mbps downloads - but especially if you're using it as a hotspot for multiple tablets and laptops that are all sharing that bandwidth.

StuartV says:

ps. Speeds as reported by Speedtest app on my phone and Speedtest on my laptop when tethered.

Nick says:

Good post, and you're one of the few people who realize that Verizon's LTE is not 4G either (even though this was mentioned in many news articles months ago).

Caca says:

Not true all of a sudden u notice YouTube videos are faster and start watching more, you start using netflix. Your usage will go way up

Arin Failing says:

i was thinking the same thing as caca . If you're downloding faster, you will be able to do more in the same amount of time. That will then entice you to use more data, at least it would for me, because one of the things that limits my data use is the speed with which I can use it. Those of us with unlimited plans will LOVE 4G (not AT&T 's HSPA+ 3.5G).

Giest says:

Being Japanese reporting on Chinese events does not make this any less of a rumor than anywhere else. Why would Unicom know any more than AT&T? Sorry, but why do people take something more seriously when it's not in their native tongue?
China is a country where the government bureaucracy and companies feel it's ok to lie without repercussion. We can't take info seriously until its OUT

Guest says:

No none of the carriers (Major ones in the US I am familiar with) are actually 4G. They are considered 3.9G I believe.

mbp1915 says:

Hmmmm........ This is a long shot, but that white box for the iPhone 5 looks wider than the iPhone 4 next to it.........?

Earless Puppy says:

Of course the iPhone 5 will be 4g, first this is why there was such a delay on it, and second Apple does a minimum 1 year product cycle, they can not wait another year to produce and 4G iPhone, that would place them too far behind the curve...

Danny Hernandez says:

The new iphone will have LTE.

OnRamp Access says:

Whoa! I cannot wait. Company phones for all.

Danny Michel says:

I live in NY. AT&T iPhone users will definitely be on a faster network than I'm on with this Verizon iPhone