Friday, September 10, 2010, 10:15 am PT (01:15 pm ET)
Canadian wireless executive fuels rumors of T-Mobile US iPhoneAn official with new Canadian wireless carrier Videotron claimed this week that Apple will manufacture an iPhone capable of 3G speeds on his company's network, as well as T-Mobile in the U.S.
Videotron is a new mobile service from Canada's Quebecor, which launched on Thursday. The company unveiled its mobile phone line at an event on Thursday, at which one of the company's executive vice presidents reportedly made comments about the iPhone.
According to Engadget Mobile, the executive claimed that Apple has plans to manufacture an iPhone that would operate on the AWS 3G spectrum — the same frequency used by the established T-Mobile network in the U.S.
The Videotron official allegedly said that customers should "expect an announcement in the coming months" regarding the launch of the iPhone on its network.
The timing is noteworthy as the comments came just after Chris Anderson, editor of Wired, wrote on his Twitter account a rumor that T-Mobile U.S. would launch Apple's iPhone 3GS later this year. An unidentified T-Mobile manager reportedly indicated that the carrier would receive last year's iPhone model, but not this year's iPhone 4.
Both T-Mobile U.S. and Canada's newly launched Videotron use the same UMTS/HSPA technology as AT&T, though they relies on different frequencies in the AWS 3G spectrum. T-Mobile's 3G service supports the 1700MHz and 2100MHz bands, while AT&T supports 850MHz and 1900MHz. The current iPhone hardware does not support the 1700MHz frequency, meaning a modification of the hardware would be necessary.
Of course, in the past wireless executives have made misunderstood statements or incorrect claims about Apple's future plans. For example, last month an executive with Mexican carrier Telcel suggested that Apple will produce a hardware revision of the iPhone 4 that will fix its external antenna and cause less signal attenuation when then bottom left corner is touched.
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