The Korea Times is reporting that Apple has been talking with South Korean based SK Telecom about the possibility of introducing an iPhone that would support its recently introduced LTE-Advanced (LTE-A) network.
“SK Telecom is approaching Apple to put our LTE-A technology on the upcoming iPhone 5S. We are in the middle of negotiations,” said an SK Telecom executive, requesting anonymity.
Because Korea has recently seen a huge demand for devices supporting high-speed networks, Apple intends to use Korea as the litmus test to gauge the marketability of LTE-A technology before making inroads into China, according to industry sources.
The report notes that Samsung recently introduced an LTE-A-compatible Galaxy S 4 device in South Korea and that SK Telecom anticipates a number of other LTE-A-compatible devices to hit the market over the next few months.
Now as for how fast LTE-A is, well let’s just say that it’s blazing. SK Telecom said that its LTE-A network can support data transfer rates of up to 150 Mbps, about twice as fast as LTE speeds in the US and 10 times as fast as 3G.