SK Telecom

Apple allegedly in talks to launch iPhone 5S with LTE Advanced in South Korea

T-Mobile USA may be planning to leapfrog its rivals by becoming the first U.S. wireless carrier to offer up to three times faster LTE Advanced cellular radio technology, but over in South Korea the SK Telecom carrier already announced last Wednesday it's become the world's first telco to launch LTE Advanced network.

As you could imagine, Samsung Electronics CEO J.K. Shin wasted no time confirming his company will launch an LTE Advanced version of its flagship Galaxy S4 smartphone, thanks to Qualcomm's Snapdragon 800 chip. And now, SK Telecom is understood to be in talks with Tim Cook & Co. over offering an LTE Advanced variant of Apple's upcoming iPhone 5S handset...

Korea orders its telcos ‘not to give excessive subsidies’ for the iPhone 5


As iPhone 5 availability continues to improve, Apple today confirmed plans to launch the handset in South Korea this coming Friday, followed by the global expansion into an additional fifty markets throughout the month of December. However, the company could face an unexpected roadblock as The Korea Communications Commission (KCC), the country's telecom regulator, has threatened to punish carriers SK Telecom and KT if they offer "illegal subsidies to attract more iPhone 5 customers".

Apparently, luring would-be buyers with aggressively subsidized hardware is against the law in the fifty million people country. It is no secret that carriers elsewhere are whining about high iPhone subsidy, with some even mulling dropping subsidies altogether amid tanking margins, like China Unicom. Others, like T-Mobile, complain that carrying the iPhone bears short-term risks due to huge upfront payments to Apple...

The big question looms: does iPhone 5 have world support for numerous LTE bands?

iDB first discovered traces of high-speed fourth-generation Long-Term Evolution (LTE) cellular networking in iOS 5.1 code. Since then, multiple code hooks, hardware hints and credible sources have all but confirmed the industry's worst kept secret, that the next iPhone is widely expected to work over 4G LTE networks.

But is it going to be a worldphone in respect to 4G? What if it doesn't support a variety of LTE frequencies in use today? A new report from South Korea alleges that local telcos have been attempting to talk Apple into supporting the 1.8-gigahertz LTE frequency used in the country. This implies that the iPhone 5 may not support the numerous 4G frequencies in use across the world...