GMA News Online

iPhone 5 not juggling calls, data for some carriers

September 16, 2012 10:50am
While there are a lot of new things Apple Inc.’s new iPhone 5 can do, there’s still something it can’t – juggle calls and data over some US carriers.

The New York Times reported the iPhone 5 for Verizon Wireless and Sprint cannot handle a call and data activity over the cellular network simultaneously, though it can do so over Wi-Fi.

“The iPhone 5 is designed to allow customers to make voice calls on the Verizon Wireless network and surf the Web on Wi-Fi. It was an Apple decision,” the NYT quoted Brenda Raney, a Verizon Wireless spokeswoman, as saying in an e-mail.

It said this is partly because 4G LTE networks at present do not handle voice calls but only data. Thus, calls on a 4G LTE smartphone are routed through the older 2G or 3G network.

NYT quoted Apple spokeswoman Natalie Kerris as saying the iPhone 5 supports simultaneous voice and data on GSM-based 3G and LTE networks.

“(But) it is not yet possible to do simultaneous voice and data on networks that use CDMA for voice and LTE for data in a single radio design,” she said.

In contrast, the NYT report said the 4G-LTE Samsung Galaxy S III can juggle calls and data by having an extra antenna. Anand Shimpi, editor-in-chief of AnandTech, said this allows the Galaxy S III to pull data from the 4G LTE network, while another antenna handles voice calls.

But Shimpi theorized Apple’s decision not to include a third antenna allows it to simplify the manufacturing of the iPhone for multiple carriers.

“Plus, in the next two years, 4G LTE technology is supposed to evolve to support voice calls, which would render another antenna unnecessary,” the NYT said. — LBG, GMA News
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