Telstra have announced today that it will be launching by 5 new 4G phones the end of the year.
With Telstra expanding its now overwhelmingly popular Telstra 4G network, we’d find ourselves unsurprised if the list included the new iPhone, a new Nokia (powered by Windows 8) and a Galaxy S3 4G in a similar fashion to the catch up version of the Galaxy S2 4G which came after the Galaxy S2 had already sold well as a 3G phone.
In terms of concrete announcements, we have an upcoming iPhone 5/New iPhone which almost everyone believes will be 4G. After that we have the impending Windows Phone 8 announcement, which we’re desperately hoping will include 4G LTE support. That’s three of the potential five, one from each of the 3 major mobile operating systems.
Telstra also released news that they are further widening the footprint of their 4G network and are boasting of their lead in customers on this network. However, Optus’ fledgling 4G LTE network has been in its test phase for what seems like an age now, so perhaps there is some reason to be hopeful that Optus may be beginning its public foray in to 4G with a bang and chase back some of Telstra’s early gains. Optus can’t delay too long, with Telstra boasting of selling 160,000 4G smartphones already, which are mostly Samsung Galaxy S2 4G or HTC One XL models.
It’s also worth remembering that if the iPhone 5/New iPhone could (should) to be released in mid-September with 4G capability, then Optus will certainly want to have its 4G LTE network up and running for the public consumer by then as coming in to another iPhone war, Telstra would run away with the lead if it were the only 4G iPhone player.
And what of Galaxy S3 4G model that the US customers already have on Verizon Wireless? Little is known about an apparent Samsung Galaxy S3 4G for Australia at present but it is inevitable as death and taxes as Samsung can’t have their best phone left out of the race onto 4G. Here’s some ideas on why…
Where the HTC One X in the US and HTC One XL in Australia found themselves somewhat curtailed by 4G, we expect the GS3 4G to experience no such obstacles. If you’re unfamiliar with the situation, the US version of the One X and the Australian One XL (both 4G capable phones) found themselves downgraded from a powerful quad-core 1.5GHz Tegra 3 processor to a less-impressive but still fast dual-core Snapdragon S4 variant. This is because the Tegra 3 CPU was incompatible with 4G LTE technology.
Fortunately for aspiring Galaxy S3 fans, the GS3 features a quad-core Exynos processor; a CPU that is, in fact, compatible with 4G LTE. This should hopefully mean that the GS3 can be both a quad-core superphone and still feature lightning-fast 4G LTE connectivity in enabled areas.
Our other hardware predictions follow a similar trend of remaining true to current Galaxy S3 specs:
- 1GB RAM
- Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich (no Jelly Bean)
- Similar external design, perhaps with 4G branding on the rear plate
- 4.8 inch 720p HD AMOLED Plus display<
- 16GB and 32GB of storage
How many more 4G smartphones will hit our shores this year, or is Telstra counting 3 phone variants in the one 4G label (e.g. 16GB / 32GB / 64GB variants as three phones)? Who knows? The 4G is yet to be properly fought. It has been a long time coming, but it is nice to have an evolution in the market place to look forward to. Remember the launch of 3G and the birth of the company 3 Mobile? Well it looks like Vodafone have rolled ’3 Mobile’ into their main brand just in time as soon, that brand name will seem very out of date