Apple actually tests LTE networks before giving 4G on its devices a go-ahead

When it comes to the question of an LTE network being compatible with the iPhone, Apple isn’t ready to take a carrier’s word. Although they’ve put up with clean desktops and higher-than-traditional licensing fees, wireless providers are now publicly irked that the Silicon Valley smartphone maker reportedly runs it’s own tests before iPhones can operate on a 4G network.

A Swiss carrier has told a news site that Apple will issue a software update allowing iPhones to operate on an LTE network only after testing the carrier’s live system. Recently, Swisscom announced the opening of its 4G network for customers – except for iPhone owners…

Apple “only enables 4G access after testing their device on an operator’s live network”, a Swisscom spokesperson told

The singly-out of iPhone owners by Apple runs counter to the usual way LTE 4G networks are approved. Usually, a carrier tests its network, ensuring that it is compatible with its frequencies and customers’ handsets.

Such prior-approval by Apple has sparked controversy and a few questions.

“Apple has put themselves in the driving seat; it’s really changing the game quite a lot”, Bengt Nordstrom, founder and head of industry consultancy Nordstrom, told the site.

It is unknown why Apple waits to check out a 4G network before enabling iPhones to operate on a carrier.

Also unclear is whether the company follows the same procedure with U.S. carriers, such as AT&T, Verizon and Sprint.

Earlier today, Apple announced its iPhone is available in 47 countries with China getting the smartphone in December.

Should the iPhone be a special case, deserving individual attention when approving a 4G network?