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The iPhone XS, XS Max and XR are Apple's first handsets to support the 600MHz spectrum, a robust LTE band currently being rolled out by T-Mobile to expand its U.S. network.
All three iPhone models can communicate with FDD-LTE, TD-LTE, CDMA EV-DO Rev. A, UMTS/HSPA+/DC-HSDPA and GSM/EDGE networks, while iPhone XS and XS Max provide extended support for TD-LTE Band 46.
T-Mobile purchased rights to Band 71 from the U.S. government's 600MHz auction in 2017, licenses that cover all of the U.S. and Puerto Rico. The telco began rolling out the network, which it bills 600MHz Extended Range LTE, that same year in an effort to expand its network footprint in hard to reach rural areas.
According to T-Mobile, Extended Range LTE signals travel twice as far from an originating cell tower and are four times more effective in buildings as compared to mid-band LTE. Extended Range LTE is already available to more than 80 percent of Americans through T-Mobile's 700MHz (Band 12) deployment, according to the company. The buildout of Band 71 is expected to deliver increased coverage and capacity for subscribers using compatible equipment.
T-Mobile on Monday announced 600MHz Extended Range LTE is accessible in 1,254 cities and towns in 36 states, including Puerto Rico.
CEO John Legere noted iPhone's inclusion of 600MHz spectrum support in a tweet shortly after Apple unveiled iPhone XS and XR at the "Gather Round" event. The post included a link to pre-register for the phones through T-Mobile's online store.