Apple extends LTE approval to 36 more operators

By the end of next week, a total of 60 operators should be approved to provide LTE support for Apple's (NASDAQ:AAPL) iPhone 5.

Apple CEO Tim Cook said toward the end of a conference call to discuss the company's fiscal first-quarter 2013 earnings that 36 operators will be gaining LTE support next week for the iPhone 5, including carriers in Italy, Denmark, Finland, Switzerland, the Philippines and several Middle Eastern countries. He did not name the individual carriers.

"Today we have 24 carriers around the world that provide LTE support for iPhone 5. Those are in countries like the US, Korea, the UK, Germany, Canada, Japan, Australia and a few others. Next week, we're adding 36 more carriers for LTE support. And these carriers will be in countries that were currently not supporting LTE," said Cook.

Apple allegedly insists mobile operators submit to its own independent testing of their LTE networks' performance before it will enable LTE functionality for iPhone 5 devices operating on their network.

The iPhone 5 was introduced in September and had launched in 100 countries by the end of December, which Apple CFO Peter Oppenheimer said represented the fastest iPhone rollout ever.

Apple's first jumped into the LTE pool with its third-generation iPad, which was introduced in March 2012. It added LTE to its iconic smartphone with the introduction of the iPhone 5 in September.

For more:
- see this Apple Insider article
- see this MacRumors article

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