iPad 3′s Third Wave With 4G Dispute In Australia
Apple fans worldwide have more cause to celebrate as the third generation of iPad is launched in more markets worldwide. The iPad 3 is finally being launched in the international markets, starting with South Korea and moving on to a dozen others. On the 20th of April, the new Retina-grade iPad has been launched in Brunei, Croatia, Cyprus, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Guatemala, Malaysia, Panama, St Maarten, Uruguay, Venezuela, and, of course, South Korea. This third wave of the iPad 3 was preceded by one on March 23rd which hit most of Europe, while the initial release of the iPad 3 had been in selected markets of North America, Europe and Asia. The last batch of the iPad 3 will be hitting on the 27th of April in 50 more markets worldwide including Colombia, Estonia, India, Israel, Latvia, Lithuania, Montenegro, South Africa and Thailand.
Normally, Apple launches its new products in major markets such as the United States and some other key cities of the world, while other cities and countries have to wait for weeks upon weeks and sometimes several months. However, this time several cities and countries in Asia and Pacific, Japan, Hong Kong, Singapore and Australia were lucky enough to get their hands on the iPad 3 sooner than the norm. Despite the fact that the iPad 3 has been available to order online or pre-order for most world markets, most buyers and fans have chosen to queue outside Apple Stores and authorized sellers shops to get a first-hand look at and their own iPad 3. Although pre-ordering requires a wait of 5 to 7 days, people still have preferred for the iPad 3 to be launched in their locality to purchase it by forming miles long lines. The iPad 3 is also priced differently depending on the market.
Malaysia, for example, has tax discounts, which means that the iPad is priced US$ 10 less than in Korea. In Brunei, on the other hand, it costs US$ 40 more than it does in Malaysia. In Korea, the iPad 3 has been very successful, much more so than Samsung’s Galaxy Tab, which is based in Korea. So, it may be safe to say that its success in Korea implies that it will be dominating tablet markets all around the world. Despite the fact that the launch in so many countries has been so delayed, it has managed to create a lot of excitement for the launch day in all the different countries. However, one of the earlier receivers of the iPad 3 have been a little upset with Apple in regards with their description of the iPad as having 4G connectivity. Australia, where the iPad 3 was launched in the first launching tide, has some complaints for Apple. Australian consumers claim Apple thinks the “Australian’s 3G is so good its 4G.”They claim that they have been duped into thinking that the iPad 3′s 4G branding would work on the local LTE bands as was written on the new Apple tablet. Apple is choosing to stand their ground on the usage of this term in the description of the iPad 3. Apple stated in their talk with the Australian Competition & Consumer Commission:
“The iPad with WiFi + 4G is a device which performs in accordance with the descriptor ’4G’ in terms of data transfer speed. The descriptor ’4G’ … conveys to consumers in Australia that the iPad with WiFi + 4G will deliver a superior level of service in terms of data transfer speed (consistent with accepted industry and regulatory use of that term), and not that the iPad with WiFi + 4G is compatible with any particular network technology promoted by a particular mobile service provider in Australia.”
Cupertino was taken to court by ACCC when it started investigating into Australian customers’ complaints that the latest fondleslab did not work with the local 4G network offered by Telestra which operates at 1800 MHz. However, it really uses 2100 MHz range that is used by HSPA+ providers, which Apple has claimed is 4G in its performance, if not in name. This seems to have been overlooked by the local telecommunications companies who have continued to brand it as 3G.
The term 4G does not mean much anymore since the International Telecommunication Union declared that such services as the HSPA+ can also be deemed as being next generation wireless networks making the 4G label seem quite misleading. When the 4G mark was being developed the two most significant names developing it were LTE and WiMax. Neither of their 4G was fast enough by the ITU standard of 100MB/sec downloads when in motion and 1GB/sec when stationary. Most mobile companies were unhappy with these terms and so ITU caved in and declared both to be 4G and any other ‘evolved 3G technologies’ could also be accepted in this category.
In response to the Australian consumers, Apple has started making posters that contain the tagline ‘PS: Not Actually 4G’ and also Apple’s Australian iPad website has changed the description according to the service providers. Conversely, this change in strategy just seems like a means for Apple to avoid paying the fines for hinting that the iPad 3 was capable of working on the Australian LTE band.