iPhone 12 Users May Face 5G Connectivity Issues in the UK: Report

The new iPhone 12 models might not have support for 700MHz 5G spectrum.

iPhone 12 Users May Face 5G Connectivity Issues in the UK: Report

Most of what to expect from the Apple's launch on October 13 have been revealed by a series of leaks

  • iPhone 12 may lack support for 700MHz 5G spectrum, claims a report
  • It may cause UK customers to face connectivity issues
  • The lower 700MHz spectrum helps provide network coverage to a wider area

Apple is expected to launch the new iPhone 12 series on October 13. The Cupertino-based company has teased the event with an invite that reads, “Hi, Speed”, hinting at the 5G capability of the iPhone 12. But a new report has a note of caution for its potential customers in the UK. It says that the iPhone 12 lineup may face coverage issues in the country because it is likely to not have the support for 700MHz 5G band, a lower spectrum band that helps signals cover more ground.

The report published late on Saturday in The Telegraph cites “industry insiders” as the source of this crucial information. Simon Rockman, a 5G analyst quoted in the report, estimates that the rollout of 700MHz 5G band in the UK, which is due to be auctioned by Ofcom early next year, will be “quite quick” and could be a missed opportunity for Apple if it releases the iPhone 12 series without 700MHz support.

The iPhone 12 lineup is expected to support 5G connectivity across all its models. The most recent leaks and rumours suggest that all iPhone 12 models will have support for sub-6GHz, and only the top-end iPhone 12 Pro Max will also support the faster mmWave 5G.

The mmWave 5G or Millimetre Wave spectrum, the radio frequency spectrum between 24GHz and 100GHz, is said to be extremely fast but its narrow wavelength means a shorter range. It would require telecom companies to set up more cell towers to cover all users. The narrow wavelength also makes mmWave 5G vulnerable to extreme weather. The addition of 700MHz 5G spectrum support to the mix could help fix this problem.

The Telegraph report also says that the lack of 700MHz support in the iPhone 12 lineup could unfairly benefit Three, a telecom operator which is said to have acquired large amounts of 5G spectrum.

Most of what to expect from the Apple's highly anticipated launch on October 13 seems to have been revealed by a series of leaks. The iPhone 12 family is expected to have four models, starting with the 5.4-inch iPhone 12 mini which is likely to be priced around $699 (roughly Rs. 51,100).

© Thomson Reuters 2020

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