Why an LTE iPhone 5 may not be best for you

Although we don’t yet know what the next iPhone will be called we’ve been referring to it as the iPhone 5 for some time, as have many other websites. We’ve been bringing you news and speculation about the iPhone 5 for some time and just recently it has looked more likely than ever that it will be LTE-equipped. Now we’re taking some time to consider why a 4G LTE iPhone 5 may not be the best option for you.

Some of the many things that have been widely rumored for the next iPhone are a larger screen, improved camera, even better resolution and the possibility of LTE connectivity. After the new iPad was announced last week we took a look at what its features and specs maybe hinted about the new iPhone. Of course as the new iPad supports LTE it seems logical that the next iPhone will also be LTE compatible.

Since then we also had further indication of the next iPhone being LTE as Verizon told how all of its smartphones launched during the rest of this year would be 4G LTE-equipped. As we pointed out, it’s highly unlikely that Verizon would not carry the next iPhone, so again this backs up that LTE iPhone 5 theory further. However although many people will be very satisfied to hear of an iPhone 5 with LTE that doesn’t automatically mean that it will be suitable for you.

IB Times has taken an interesting look at why it may be best to avoid 4G LTE service, for now at least and especially with Verizon. The article makes some valid points, one of them being the higher pricing of LTE devices and data plans. Only you can decide whether those price differences are worth paying but certainly this is something to consider and some may feel that staying with a 3G device is the right choice for now.

Another factor that has plagued many LTE devices is poor battery life and equipping these devices with more powerful batteries to cope with LTE demands has led to some devices becoming thicker and bulkier. However we should point out that the new LTE iPad is only marginally thicker than its predecessor and Apple has managed to step up with the battery so that it gives roughly the same amount of juice as before, or slightly less on LTE. Therefore maybe the latest technology is catching up with this snag and that won’t be as big a consideration for future devices.

Another thing to think about is that Verizon’s 4G LTE network has undregone several outages recently, causing huge inconvenience and frustration for many of its customers with LTE devices. Although we can’t say that this will happen in future, there was in fact another outage only this week so it’s certainly something to take into account. Obviously we should point out that LTE networks are in their infancy and so there are bound to be some issues that need ironing out but all the same it’s still annoying when problems continue to occur.

Finally it’s worth remembering that 4G LTE coverage is still pretty thin on the ground compared to 3G, both for Verizon and AT&T. If you live in an LTE network area that’s great but if you travel around a lot you may want to consider whether you’ll get enough use of the LTE network to justify the extra costs.

Ultimately we’re certainly not saying that buying an LTE device isn’t worth it, for some it’s the perfect option and as more time goes by and the networks settle down and become more established there will be less issues to consider. We are saying though that an LTE device may not be the right choice for you at this time.

We’re interested in what our readers have to say about this. Do you already own an LTE device and wouldn’t go back? Have you been waiting for an LTE iPhone 5? Maybe you’ve considered purchasing an LTE device but are not yet convinced it’s best for you?


5 thoughts on “Why an LTE iPhone 5 may not be best for you”

  1. AndreK says:

    I’m not convinced that in the near future LTE will deliver enough benefits for smart phones, that are worth an extra payment. But a phone that works flawlessly, is worth every penny.
    In a year or two LTE will be a key feature if the power consumption is acceptable.

  2. Brett says:

    This article makes some valid points, however I’m very curious about the ‘extra cost’ that was mentioned numerous times. Sure, the devices are more expensive, but the prices are pretty much in line with what we were paying for 3G devices in their heyday. A subsidized cost of $200-250 for a 4G device is not outrageous to me. Additionally, I thought the data plans on AT&T and Verizon were priced according to the amount of data only — I’ve never seen anything from either carrier stating that there are additional charges for 4G data.

  3. guest1 says:

    I recently used a 4G lte phone (Galaxy Note) for about 3 wks before returning it. The reason was while on the road for four days, I used it to check email and stocks etc. No GPS. No movies, nothing. Upon reaching home, I was shocked to see that within those 4 days, my data usage was around 100 MB (I have a 200 mb/month plan)….scared the hell out of me so I ran to the store and returned it. Guess it is too much technology for my taste.  What I don’t know is why would 4G lte shoot up my data usage so much? FYI, I never had Android before that…

  4. Postas83 says:

    I’m very wary of LTE. I had a Galaxy SII LTE phone whenit came out last November and had 100 mb in less than a day. So yes, LTE will eat up your cap quickly as pointed out here earlier. If I had kept it and used for the rest of the month, I would have been throttled on AT&T. Still using a 3G phone and I feel liberated without having to worry about throttling. Slow is fine by me. Better than not being able to use you’re phone for 3 weeks.

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