4G-capable iPhone won't come until at least 2012

Posted by Raven Lovecraft

You probably won't be seeing an iPhone with 4G connectivity this year, especially not from Verizon.

According to a new report from Digitimes, which cited sources as saying there are supply issues with mobile chips equipped with 4G technology using what it called the Long Term Evolution (LTE) standard - the 4G standard used by Verizon.

"Apple is likely to delay the launch of its LTE-enabled iPhones to 2012, said the sources, noting that the industry had also long been skeptical about the launch of LTE iPhones in 2011 as the implementation of LTE networks has not yet matured," said Digitimes.

There had been some speculation that a 4G iPhone would be ready to hit the stores later this year. But then again, we were also expecting an iPhone 5 to come out in the coming months. Recent reports, though, suggest the next iPhone will still contain the 'iPhone 4' name and will likely be branded as the iPhone 4S.

The Digitimes article only applies to LTE chips, and does not mention HSPA+, the technology behind AT&T's 4G network. It seems unlikely, though, that Apple would launch a device with 4G connectivity on one network but not the other.

It's hard to remember, but when the original iPhone was released, it didn't even have 3G connectivity, which at the time was still very outdated. So it shouldn't come as a surprise that Apple is going to be late to the 4G game as well.