LTE iPhone: Game Changer?

The LTE-enabled iPhone, expected to be introduced on September 12th, may be a game-changer for Verizon, says Jefferies telecom analyst Thomas Seitz. That’s because Verizon has much broader LTE coverage.

He expects the phone may sell as many as a five million units before September ends, and another 15 million in December quarter, and that it will be “the biggest consumer product launch ever.”

Seitz says AT&T trails far behind Verizon at just 30 million “POPs” covered with LTE, while Sprint is barely in the game. By the end of 2013, the differences may be moderated — but that’s a long way off.

Seitz writes:

As of the end of 2Q12, Verizon’s LTE network covered 230 million POPs, more than all the other carriers in the US combined. We believe this network advantage could lead to a share shift towards Verizon, primarily at AT&T’s expense – which we estimate could see its market share of iPhone sales decline modestly to 45% in 3Q12 from 47% in 2Q12.

AT&T has two other factors going against it in 2H12. First, the company sold (and consequently locked in) 9 million iPhones in 3Q10 and 4Q10, and many of these customers will be coming off contract. Second, AT&T raised its prices when it introduced shared data plans.

We believe T-Mobile remains the wild card. In our analysis we are assuming that T-Mobile will not get the iPhone, since there has been no credible news to indicate otherwise. However, if T-Mobile USA were to get the new iPhone, in our view the company is likely to see its postpaid net loss moderate significantly. In this scenario, we believe Sprint could be the biggest loser.

Of course there are a lot of moving parts.

FreedomPop, for example, provides free bandwidth, with $99 iPhone sleeve cases acting as traditional access points. The MVNO is planning to switch from Clearwire’s WiMAX network to Sprint’s LTE before 2012 is over.

China will overtake the United States as the world’s biggest smartphone market this year, according to research firm IDC, which expects demand to grow for lower-priced smartphones based on Google Inc’s Android software.

IDC forecast that China’s share of the smartphone market will increase to 26.5 percent this year from 18.3 percent last year, while the U.S. share of the global market is expected to decline to 17.8 percent from 21.3 percent as smartphones become more popular, worldwide. The next iPhone is expected to work on China Mobile’s network, the largest cellular provider in the world, with close to 700 million subscribers.

LTE worldwide subscriber rolls are expected to quadruple this year and increase by a factor of 70 by 2016, according iSuppli.

NTT DoCoMo, Japan’s largest mobile operator, said it has reached 5 million LTE subscribers, taking less than one month to add the latest million subscribers.

Verizon has over 10 million LTE subs in the U.S., with LTE now available to more than 75% of the U.S. in 370 markets. By the end of 2012 Verizon expects their LTE network will cover 260 million people in more than 400 markets across the United States.

Rival AT&T expects to expand its LTE network, which currently covers 80 million people, to 150 million POPs by year’s end. AT&T’s LTE sub count is less clear, but may have close to 4 million LTE subs. Sprint Nextel, which has just launched FD-LTE service, expects to cover 123 million POPs with LTE by year’s end, says Fierce Wireless.

As of last quarter, Verizon had converted only 9% of its subscriber base to LTE despite having a wide lead in LTE coverage. AT&T plans to complete its LTE roll-out and be roughly on par with Verizon’s LTE coverage by the end of 2013. LTE adoption is expected to pick up after the iPhone 5 launch and strengthen in 2013.

The United States reportedly has a cumulative base of 16 million LTE subscribers, currently. That’s close to the combined total LTE subscribers in Japan and South Korea, and the adoption rate in Asia appears to be faster. Still, the total number of 4G subs is relatively tiny, compared to the vast number of 3G subscribers, world-wide.

IHS says smartphones will overtake feature phones in 2013, 2 years earlier than expected.

Related Dailywireless articles include; Wireless 2nd Quarter: Good, Indian/Asian Telecom Growth Rates, South Korea Completes Nationwide LTE Coverage, Mary Meeker: Internet Trends 2012, China Mobile + Apple: Getting Closer?, USA: 332 Million Mobiles , 4G: One Third of All Smartphones

LTE iPhone: Game Changer?

The LTE-enabled iPhone, expected to be introduced on September 12th, may be a game-changer for Verizon, says Jefferies telecom analyst Thomas Seitz. That’s because Verizon has much broader LTE coverage.

He expects the phone may sell as many as a five million units before September ends, and another 15 million in December quarter, and that it will be “the biggest consumer product launch ever.”

Seitz says AT&T trails far behind Verizon at just 30 million “POPs” covered with LTE, while Sprint is barely in the game. By the end of 2013, the differences may be moderated — but that’s a long way off.

Seitz writes:

As of the end of 2Q12, Verizon’s LTE network covered 230 million POPs, more than all the other carriers in the US combined. We believe this network advantage could lead to a share shift towards Verizon, primarily at AT&T’s expense – which we estimate could see its market share of iPhone sales decline modestly to 45% in 3Q12 from 47% in 2Q12.

AT&T has two other factors going against it in 2H12. First, the company sold (and consequently locked in) 9 million iPhones in 3Q10 and 4Q10, and many of these customers will be coming off contract. Second, AT&T raised its prices when it introduced shared data plans.

We believe T-Mobile remains the wild card. In our analysis we are assuming that T-Mobile will not get the iPhone, since there has been no credible news to indicate otherwise. However, if T-Mobile USA were to get the new iPhone, in our view the company is likely to see its postpaid net loss moderate significantly. In this scenario, we believe Sprint could be the biggest loser.

Of course there are a lot of moving parts.

FreedomPop, for example, provides free bandwidth, with $99 iPhone sleeve cases acting as traditional access points. The MVNO is planning to switch from Clearwire’s WiMAX network to Sprint’s LTE before 2012 is over.

China will overtake the United States as the world’s biggest smartphone market this year, according to research firm IDC, which expects demand to grow for lower-priced smartphones based on Google Inc’s Android software.

IDC forecast that China’s share of the smartphone market will increase to 26.5 percent this year from 18.3 percent last year, while the U.S. share of the global market is expected to decline to 17.8 percent from 21.3 percent as smartphones become more popular, worldwide. The next iPhone is expected to work on China Mobile’s network, the largest cellular provider in the world, with close to 700 million subscribers.

LTE worldwide subscriber rolls are expected to quadruple this year and increase by a factor of 70 by 2016, according iSuppli.

NTT DoCoMo, Japan’s largest mobile operator, said it has reached 5 million LTE subscribers, taking less than one month to add the latest million subscribers.

Verizon has over 10 million LTE subs in the U.S., with LTE now available to more than 75% of the U.S. in 370 markets. By the end of 2012 Verizon expects their LTE network will cover 260 million people in more than 400 markets across the United States.

Rival AT&T expects to expand its LTE network, which currently covers 80 million people, to 150 million POPs by year’s end. AT&T’s LTE sub count is less clear, but may have close to 4 million LTE subs. Sprint Nextel, which has just launched FD-LTE service, expects to cover 123 million POPs with LTE by year’s end, says Fierce Wireless.

As of last quarter, Verizon had converted only 9% of its subscriber base to LTE despite having a wide lead in LTE coverage. AT&T plans to complete its LTE roll-out and be roughly on par with Verizon’s LTE coverage by the end of 2013. LTE adoption is expected to pick up after the iPhone 5 launch and strengthen in 2013.

The United States reportedly has a cumulative base of 16 million LTE subscribers, currently. That’s close to the combined total LTE subscribers in Japan and South Korea, and the adoption rate in Asia appears to be faster. Still, the total number of 4G subs is relatively tiny, compared to the vast number of 3G subscribers, world-wide.

IHS says smartphones will overtake feature phones in 2013, 2 years earlier than expected.

Related Dailywireless articles include; Wireless 2nd Quarter: Good, Indian/Asian Telecom Growth Rates, South Korea Completes Nationwide LTE Coverage, Mary Meeker: Internet Trends 2012, China Mobile + Apple: Getting Closer?, USA: 332 Million Mobiles , 4G: One Third of All Smartphones

Atom Roadmap Leaked

Intel’s new Atom chip lineup will feature four models of 22nm chips, with the D- and M-series looking to replace the Cedar Trail 32nm SoC chips used in current netbook and low-end desktop devices, says Engadget.

T-series Atom chips would appear in tablets and other small form-factor devices, according to the leaked slides. Codenamed Bay Trail, it should appear next year. Clover Trail Atom chips are only just arriving in upcoming Windows 8 slates like the Acer W510 or Asus Tablet 810 (above).

The new chips should be faster, with up to four cores and clock speeds topping out at 2.4Ghz. Gen 7 graphics engines of Ivy Bridge fame will feature the same HD 4000 and HD 2500 GPU’s, but with only four “execution units” instead of the 16 in the current desktop chips. They will offload video decoding and 3D rendering from the CPU and allow simultaneous display to a TV or monitor.

The next-generation Atom platform, say ArsTechnica, is slated to replace the Cedar Trail platform for desktops and netbooks and the Oak Trail platform for tablets when they launch at the end of 2013. The CPU side of Valleyview is codenamed Silvermont, and it is said to be the most substantial change to the Atom architecture since it was introduced in 2008. Silvermont brings out-of-order execution to Atom, which allows the CPU to process different instructions as soon as resources to execute them are available.

Bay Trail is expected to make true x86 Windows tablets that are comparable in cost, battery life, and performance to their ARM counterparts. It supports 8GB of DDR3 RAM, double that of the “last” gen, as well as USB 3.0, SATA 2.0 and a host of other connection options. The Silvermont CPU is already scheduled to be superseded in 2014 by the 14nm Airmont architecture.

Atom Roadmap Leaked

Intel’s new Atom chip lineup will feature four models of 22nm chips, with the D- and M-series looking to replace the Cedar Trail 32nm SoC chips used in current netbook and low-end desktop devices, says Engadget.

T-series Atom chips would appear in tablets and other small form-factor devices, according to the leaked slides. Codenamed Bay Trail, it should appear next year. Clover Trail Atom chips are only just arriving in upcoming Windows 8 slates like the Acer W510 or Asus Tablet 810 (above).

The new chips should be faster, with up to four cores and clock speeds topping out at 2.4Ghz. Gen 7 graphics engines of Ivy Bridge fame will feature the same HD 4000 and HD 2500 GPU’s, but with only four “execution units” instead of the 16 in the current desktop chips. They will offload video decoding and 3D rendering from the CPU and allow simultaneous display to a TV or monitor.

The next-generation Atom platform, say ArsTechnica, is slated to replace the Cedar Trail platform for desktops and netbooks and the Oak Trail platform for tablets when they launch at the end of 2013. The CPU side of Valleyview is codenamed Silvermont, and it is said to be the most substantial change to the Atom architecture since it was introduced in 2008. Silvermont brings out-of-order execution to Atom, which allows the CPU to process different instructions as soon as resources to execute them are available.

Bay Trail is expected to make true x86 Windows tablets that are comparable in cost, battery life, and performance to their ARM counterparts. It supports 8GB of DDR3 RAM, double that of the “last” gen, as well as USB 3.0, SATA 2.0 and a host of other connection options. The Silvermont CPU is already scheduled to be superseded in 2014 by the 14nm Airmont architecture.

Mobile operators unleash price war in India, offer unlimited price plans (India)

Mobile operators in India have launched truly unlimited price plans for the first time giving heavy users a reason to celebrate. The plans have been introduced for both postpaid and prepaid users. The plan was first introduced by Tata Docomo, the telecom brand of Tata Teleservices Limited. The operator first launched a tariff plan at $16.1 [...]