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Monday, January 31, 2011, 10:25 pm PT (01:25 am ET)

Verizon iPhone Qualcomm baseband, Netgear CEO apologizes, Apple hiring more LTE engineers

With Monday's release of iOS 4.2.6 for the Verizon CDMA iPhone, one hacker claims to have confirmation that Apple went with Qualcomm for the CDMA baseband. Also, Netgear CEO Patrick Lo has apologized for comments he made about Steve Jobs, and Apple job listings reveal that the iPhone maker continues to look for engineers with LTE experience, possibly in preparation for a 4G LTE iPhone.

Qualcomm baseband

Within hours of Apple's posting of iOS 4.2.6 for the Verizon iPhone Monday, Italian hacker Zibri claims to have discovered that the new software utilizes a Qualcomm baseband.

"Apple today posted the firmware for the Verizon CDMA iPhone and
guess what? It has a Qualcomm baseband! Version: 1.0.05," wrote Zibri on his blog.

Earlier in January, Zibri claimed to have found evidence supporting a Qualcomm baseband in an iTunes update.

Qualcomm had long been pegged as the likely provider of a CDMA baseband for the iPhone. Last year, AppleInsider discovered a Qualcomm job posting for a "iPhone Developer Guru" to work on a top secret project.

Rumors have emerged suggesting that Apple's next-generation iPhone and iPad could sport dual GSM and CDMA radios in order to eliminate the need for two separate devices.

Netgear apology

After off-the-cuff remarks by Netgear CEO Patrick Lo drew criticism Monday, the executive has issued an apology for comments that some had interpreted to refer to Apple CEO Steve Jobs' health issues, though he continues to stand by his views on "business issues."

Lo made the comments Monday during a lunch in Sydney, Australia. "Once Steve Jobs goes away, which is probably not far away, then Apple will have to make a strategic decision on whether to open up the platform," Lo said, comparing while Google Android to Apple's iOS.

"I stand by the opinions I stated on the business issues. Supporting open standards and environments in order to ease seamless networking integration of multimedia content is good for the consumer and good for content providers," wrote Lo in an email.

"However, I deeply regret the choice of words I used in relation to business decisions Apple must grapple with in the future in relation to open vs. closed systems, which have been construed by some to be references to Steve Jobs’ health and which was never my intention. I sincerely apologize that what I said was interpreted this way, and I wish Steve only the very best."

LTE engineers

Reports emerged Monday that Apple is looking for an experienced engineer familiar with various networking technologies, including the 4G LTE standard.

Apple's job site has a posting for an "iOS cellular protocol sw engineer" who would be based in Shanghai, China. The engineer, would "help develop [Apple's] next generation of iOS products." The position's duties include: "Implementation, Integration, customization, enhancement and maintenance of L1-3 Protocols for one or more of the following air interface: GSM/UMTS, CDMA (1x/EVDO), LTE etc."

In March of last year, a job posting for a cellular technology software manager also listed knowledge of LTE as a requirement for the position.

Last week, China Mobile Chairman Wang Jianzhou claimed that Apple has plans to support LTE. "These two years we have been discussing the issue. Right now the situation is moving forward. Apple has made it clear they will support TD-LTE," he was quoted as saying.