Design and principles of 3G, 4G & LTE
‘G’ means generation and LTE or Long Term Evolution is the latest standard. It is based on GSM principle but has it personal standards and is considered to be genuine 4th generation of cellular data.
Both 2G & 3G were primarily designed for voice communication instead of data. Alternatively, 4G is aimed specifically for data transmission instead of voice. 4G provides faster access to Web on mobile devices.
For example, 4G for video streaming includes high resolution and less stuttering. Similarly, multi-player games and video conferencing work better with quick data transmission over 4G. If you use phone for voice communication then there is no need to select 4G, thus save money and battery life by selecting device without high speed network.
If you enjoying surfing, especially stream videos then 4G can be bliss. Connecting your mobile to laptop with 4G makes a vast difference. Remember to monitor your data limits because lots of data gets used quickly with 4G.
The iPhone 4S supports HSPA+, which is considered as 4G by T-Mobile and AT&T. The iPhone 5 and later versions include LTE capabilities as well as iPad mini and pro along with 9.7 inch iPad.
T-Mobile 4G Signal Strength in USA
No contract phones
“No contract phones” means to invest in a device without a 2 year commitment with the carrier. With no contract packages, you get freedom and flexibility to select a carrier, phone, and services. You are not obligated to pay any carrier monthly charges.
Different versions of iPhone 5S – Great example of interoperability
iPhone 5S is packed with multiple technologies, band classes and radio frequencies. This makes its hardware interoperable with different carriers. Every version of iPhone 5S is compatible with GSM technologies 2G and 3G.
However, with CDMA and LTE things differ. All the 4 main carriers are employing different versions of iPhone 5S. T-Mobile and AT&T are selling GSM model, Sprint and Verizon are selling CDMA model.
From hardware perspective, iPhone 5S from Sprint and Verizon can operate on T-Mobile and AT&T. Because Sprint and Verizon versions support LTE bands 2, 4, as well as 17. AT&T and T-Mobile uses 2 and 4 LTE bands, whereas 17 bands is used by AT&T. Technically speaking Sprint and Verizon use GSM, so they get 2G and 3G services on T-Mobile and AT&T networks.