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Verizon, AT&T To Launch 5G Rollout On Jan. 19 Following Delay

Verizon and AT&T will launch an upgraded 5G service on Jan. 19 following a delay at the request of Transportation Secretary Peter Buttigieg. The carriers had faced pressure from the White House and airlines over fears that the C-band transmissions would disrupt flights.

Verizon and AT&T — headed by CEOs Hans Vestberg and John Stankey, respectively — had previously rejected the request for postponement, saying that they were “willing to accept some temporary measures” over the next six months to limit services around certain airports and runways.

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Airlines asked the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to delay the launching, citing concerns that the 5G launch would interfere with the pilots and their aircraft electronics. Airlines For America (A4A) went into more details about the possible problems, noting the 5G spectrum is adjacent to the frequencies utilized by an aircraft’s radio altimeters. A4A also estimated that disruptions would cost passengers $1.3 billion in forms of lost time, productivity, and wages.

The service had been set to launch on Jan. 5. “We know aviation safety and 5G can co-exist and we are confident further collaboration and technical assessment will allay any issues,” AT&T said in a statement. The company also reiterated their plan to act carefully around specific airports in order to provide the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) more time to study potential affects, as well as to locate and fix any issues.

In their own statement, Verizon said that the delay helps to ensure the certainty of delivering the 5G network this month. An official told CNN that sides had been “working frantically” to come to an agreement, and that the result is “good in the interim.”

Buttigeig, along with FAA head Steve Dickerson, sent the joint request to Stankey and Vestberg on Dec. 31, asking for activation delays near an unknown number of “priority airports.” Carrier executives had concerns on their side as well, worrying that further 5G postponements would “harm customers.”

Executives added that agreeing to the request would not only be “unprecedented and unwarranted circumvention,” but an “abdication of the operating control” that’s required to control communications networks. Both companies had previously accepted a one-month delay, as the activation was initially planned for December.

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Verizon explains that the launch will allow more than 100 million people in 1,700 U.S. cities to get “Ultra Wideband” 5G service – at the cost of $80 a month. The carrier states that Ultra Wideband is 10x faster than their 4G LTE and allows download speeds up to one gigabit per second.

Last year, Verizon doubled its C-Band spectrum in an auction — adding between 140 to 200 MHz in every available market — at the cost of $52.9 billion dollars. AT&T didn’t hold back their wallet, either. The carrier spent $23 billion on spectrum purchases, as well as an additional $6 to $8 billion in deployment costs.

The spectrum expansions are crucial for both carriers in the fight for subscribers. T-Mobile has quickly supplemented itself with the two, as it added a total of 673,000 postpaid phone customers during the third quarter of 2021 – higher than Verizon (429,000) though lower than AT&T (928,000). Bloomberg noted T-Mobile has also taken a large lead in mid-band 5G services.

Apple’s Most Affordable 5G iPhone Projected To Get A Billion Android Users To Switch 

Apple is currently rumored to launch a third-generation of their iPhone SE in early 2022, this time with 5G support. According to analyst’s from JP Morgan, the upgrade “has the potential to attract more than a billion non-premium Android users.”

According to Reuters, the third-generation of the iPhone SE could lure nearly 1.4 billion low-to-mid-end Android phone users to switch, as well as around 300 million older iPhone model users.”  

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“Apple’s trade-in program for non-iPhones is admittedly not as attractive as the iPhone trade-in values, it could nonetheless lead to an average starting price range of $269 to $399 for the 5G iPhone SE, which is still very competitive,” analyst Samik Chatterjee, said.

In a separate note, J.P.Morgan said “consumer demand for major upgrades like 5G models is expected to remain strong and also a priority for supply, even as it wanes for most hardware products including smartphones, TVs and PCs.”

According to online rumors, the iPhone SE third-generation is expected to feature the same physical form as it currently has; the equivalent of a 2017 iPhone 8. The phone will likely have a 4.7 inch LCD display, an upgraded processor, and of course, 5G capabilities. 

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Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo believes that the new phone will likely have either an A15 Bionic processor, as seen in the iPhone 13, or an A14 Bionic chip, as seen in the iPhone 12. Either way, it will be a major upgrade for the SE models. 

JP Morgan’s analysis also found that for the fiscal 2022 year, iPhone SE “unit sales are expected to rise to 30 million units and annual iPhone shipments are expected to reach 250 million units; 10 million units higher than a year earlier.”

The report itself doesn’t specify exactly how or why the potential “billion” Android users will switch, but based on past market trends when it comes to switching from Android to Apple every time a new device is released, it makes sense that more users would be making the switch this time around to take advantage of a much cheaper 5G capable smartphone. 

There is currently no predicted date as to when Apple will release the next generation of SE models, however, it will likely take place at some point in the spring.

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iPhone 12 To Potentially Feature 5G Capability, And Other Rumors

Despite the current coronavirus pandemic, major tech companies are continuing to roll out new projects on schedule in order to create a sense of encouragement and something to look forward to for tech lovers everywhere. Apple, being the most prominent, recently held a virtual Keynote conference where they announced a multitude of new products and software. Now, fans of Apple know that next up is their September Keynote presentation where they, typically, announce the year’s newest iPhone upgrade. 

While there’s no real word on how or when this Keynote presentation will take place, based on the release of iOS 14, many tech experts are gearing up for an iPhone update right on schedule this year. Here’s some of the most anticipated/rumored features that Apple fans are predicting the company will implement in the new upgrade. 

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Disclaimer: These are all rumors/predictions based on what experts typically look for in Apple’s annual conference, none of these features have been confirmed or denied from Apple. 

Typically, the newest iPhone is announced in the beginning of September and released by the end of the month, however, based on trading discrepancies with China, the coronavirus pandemic, and exporting issues in general, experts are predicting the new iPhone will more likely be released in October. 

The iPhone 12 will possibly be cheaper than the iPhone 11, as Apple has been releasing their newer models at cheaper prices and payment plans to appeal to more audiences who miss having the two-year upgrade fee of just $200 whenever they would want a new phone. The iPhone 11 itself was $50 cheaper than it’s previous counterpart, so many are predicting Apple will continue this trend. 

The design is always what fans look forward to seeing every year, however, many are predicting that the exterior of the iPhone 12 won’t be that different from the 11. Tech rumor blogs that are in coordination with Apple factory workers in China claim that so far the only major physical difference in the 12 is a slightly thinner body, however, Apple tends to love to shock their audiences with dramatic physical changes to their devices; for example the removal of the home button and headphone jack from all iPhone models. 

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It’s also been rumored that as a means to promote wireless charging products, the new iPhone may not even have a charging port to plug into. This would further push individuals to buy the company’s wireless headphones, Airpods, as well, as many can still use plug-in headphones through an adapter that goes in the charging port. 

With the iPhone 11 Pro, Apple announced a new dark green color that was widely popular among consumers. Now, it’s rumored that the Pro version of the 12 will also include a dark navy blue shade to choose from as well. 

Many are also predicting that size wise the iPhone 12 will come with options just like the 11 and 11 Pro Max. The screen quality will also have a higher resolution and refresh rate; meaning it’ll be able to switch from screen-to-screen much easier. 

Finally, like most new phone models it’s predicted that the newest iPhone will include 5G connectivity and Apple may even release their own 5G antennas. 5G is a relatively new concept in the tech world but it’s one that all major company’s (Samsung, Google, Sony etc.) are beginning to implement into their personal devices. 

Only time will tell how valid these rumors are, however, Apple fans are notorious for their predictions/source information when it comes to device features and release dates, so it’s more of just a waiting game now.

What Apple Fans Are Expecting For The Next iPad Pro

Apple recently announced the launch of the next generation for the iPad Pro in March, however, Apple fanatics are already predicting what they’re expecting from the next revision. Apple is fairly cyclical when it comes to their device releases. Depending on the device they typically have a soft update of everything in the winter/beginning of spring months of the year; “soft update” meaning more internalized upgrades that help the device run better. 

Apple’s September Keynote event is when the larger upgraded devices are announced, normally,  hence why fans are already anticipating the next iPad launch, as that upgrade is likely to be a lot more extensive. 

The iPad Pro upgrade in March gave the device a brand new camera system that is similar to that on the iPhone, and a new Magic Keyboard, which is compatible with some older iPad models as well. As previously stated, the main updates to the device were internal, the Pro now has an A12Z Bionic processor and 6GB of RAM.

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One of the biggest changes that will be expected of the next generation iPad will be an improvement in the screen quality. Fans are expecting Apple to upgrade the way they use mini LED’s in the screen in order to improve the display quality and give the device a longer battery life (as it will have to work less to display more quality images). 

Right now all iPads use one large black-light screen that engulfs the entire device. Mini LED displays would be made up of smaller “dimming zones” that can be turned on and off individually depending on what’s being displayed on the screen; in terms of color and image resolution. Mini LED’s would also allow Apple to reach a wider color gradient, which is fairly impressive considering they already have such an advanced spectrum of colors for their displays. 

For the next generation of iPad Pro’s, fans are expecting that Apple will finally give 5G connectivity to the tablets. The newest generations of iPhone are expected to also adopt 5G technology, so it’s likely that Apple will implement it into all of its mobile devices at the same time. 

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On the internal side, the next iPad Pro will likely contain an A14 processor chip, which is still in its early stages of manufacturing in general. The chip, like the 5G connectivity, will also be implemented into the next generations of iPhone; as you can tell, Apple is very much a “two birds one stone” company, and it’s the reason they’ve remained so successful for so long, as they always wait to release new internal upgrades unless multiple devices can also contain those upgrades. 

As of right now it’s fairly unclear how much the next generation of iPad’s will cost, however, the addition of features such as 5G and mini-LED lights, along with an extended battery life and more powerful processor will likely increase the price. The current iPad Pro models start at $799 but can cost up to $1100 depending on the model. 

Normally, as mentioned, Apple saves its bigger launches for their September Keynote, however, thanks to Covid-19 it’s unclear as to when any sort of keynote event will be able to occur again. Fans are predicting that Apple will delay the launch of all these new upgrades, along with their other devices until the beginning of 2021, so for now, only time will tell when we’ll see all these updates actually put into fruition.