Yesterday after the Apple event, we received a tip saying the iPhone 5 wouldn't be able to do simultaneous voice and data over LTE, which mean Verizon and Sprint wouldn't be able to do voice and data at the same time at all, and AT&T and other GSM carriers would have to drop data down to HSPA in order to do it. It sounded strange to us, because almost every other LTE phone launched to date has been able to do simultaneous voice/data. Here's how it was explained to us:
iPhone 5 will not support simultaneous LTE data and voice on any carrier, and cannot possibly support SVDO on CDMA carriers.
So on AT&T, iPhone will fall back to HSPA+ while on a phone call. On Verizon/Sprint, there will be no data while on a phone call (while every other CDMA/LTE smartphone does support LTE data while on a phone call).
The only thing we could think of is that Apple made a deliberate decision to optimize for battery life by using a single connection on the radio The editors here at Mobile Nations spent some time batting it back and forth and, frankly, hoped it was a mistake.
Turns out it might not have been. The Verge has received the following statement from Verizon:
The iPhone 5 was designed to allow customers to place a voice call on the Verizon Wireless network, while letting customers access the Internet over the WiFi
And just as described above, AT&T will only be able to do it over HSPA. How fast the iPhone 5 will be able to fall back onto HSPA and then return to LTE as you make calls is the X-factor here. On early Android phones, LTE handoffs were abysmal. With the new iPad, they haven't been bad at all. But: no voice going on.
If this does indeed turn out to be true, will it change which carrier you choose to go with for the iPhone 5? You know the next generation AT&T commercials are just warming up for it...