I think the reason we are seeing this is that it is getting easier to get radio modules that have both CDMA and GSM. If the part is the same size as older versions and cheap enough, why not have a iPad/iPhone that can do it all.
Apple is rumored to be readying a next-generation "World iPad" that works on both GSM and CDMA networks, presumably in the hope of blanketing the world with a new version of its magical and revolutionary device. "Apple is going to be ratcheting down production of the existing 3G iPad over the next two months in anticipation of …
It says much about Jobs and Apple that they have, technically, abandoned the Lemon 4 obviously not intending to do anything about the outstanding problems.
CDMA, whilst a good technology at it's inception, is dieing. Many S.E. Asian cell systems are junking their CDMA systems and replacing it with GSM.
China is a marketing challenge: Apple products are really too expensive for the mass of the population and only a few places like BeiJing or ShangHai have citizens with sufficient disposable income.
In most of the country, where the farmers hang out, they have different priorities like running water in the houses, sewage systems. In many places they still live in houses made from grass sod - hardly places you would find a market for a smartphone.
Here we go again: "It says much about Jobs and Apple that they have, technically, abandoned the Lemon 4 obviously not intending to do anything about the outstanding problems."
A potential signal problem if held in a certain way? Which is fixed if device is put in case/cover/held a different way.
Argh!!! The world is ending!!! Noooo!!! Argh!!!!
Grow up you turd-brain.
CDMA might be dead end but it works really good, better in my experience than any version of GSM including HSDPA.
I live on a boat and we have used cellular connections for the Internet since 1996, in Mexico when we used the earliest AMPS systems and a Motorola brick there. It worked,
I have recently, in the last three years, used GSM and CDMA 3G systems with a variety of USB modems to connect to the internet with my laptop in at least 6 countries. I get much faster and consistent download speed with my CDMA devices than with any of my GSM devices. With CDMA evdo rev A I can usually watch TV episodes without video buffering. With HSDPA this is very rare.
The biggest difference for me however is the much longer range of the CDMA signals. I can get CDMA connections miles further from towers than with any GSM. In my situation speed and range are critical.
So I will be very sad to see CDMA die out.
"perhaps i'm wrong - but HSDPA is a type of CDMA? (W-CDMA at least)"
Yep. And to paraphrase the article, I hasten to add that HSDPA is *also* a dead-end 3G tech, they are also going to LTE as an upgrade path. LTE is not really related to either CDMA/EVDO or GSMUMTS/HSDPA technologies, so in reality they are both ultimately a dead end.
wingssail hits it on the head though as to why AT&T would bother with a CDMA+GSM device, along with paulej72. I don't think it's actually cheaper or easier to get a CDMA+GSM chip compared to one that supports only one or the other. But it's not hard either, and I think it's essentially drop-in compatible between Qualcomm's CDMA-only, GSM-only, and CDMA+GSM MSM (Mobile System Modem) chips.
And expanding on what wingssail says, the CDMA networks here in the US absolutely kill the GSM networks both in network quality and coverage area. There's two big factors why. First, Qualcomm designed CDMA to minimize costs -- they rolled it out with as high of capacity as they could, and have more than doubled the capacity since then through incremental improvements. They also designed it so it was an easy upgrade from AMPS (analog) so initially the companies wouldn't have the pressure to roll it out all at once. EVDO was also designed to keep costs down. CDMA + EVDO deployments cost quite a bit less to deploy than GSM + WCDMA. This meant the $$$ spent could be spent more on increasing coverage and less on increasing capacity in existing coverage areas. The second factor is simply that AT&T & T-Mobile (the two predominant GSM carriers) have seriously skimped on $$$ invested in their networks, and the CDMA carriers have spent a lot to improve service and coverage area. The result, Verizon's got almost 100% of their network upgraded to EVDO, you could literally ride in a car coast-to-coast (about 3000 miles) and get EVDO the whole way. While AT&T (who has the largest WCDMA network in the US) has a much smaller network than Verizon, and have only about 20% of it upgraded to 3G.. result, they have about 10% the 3G that Verizon has... basically splotches of 3G surrounded by seas of EDGE and even some GPRS roaming.
I've heard it's similar in some high-population-density countries like South Korea and India -- basically, due to so many phone users and such heavy usage, CDMA +EVDO's higher capacity was a big deal.
Ultimately, going to LTE makes sense for both though -- for the CDMA guys, Qualcomm had an upgrade path up to UMB (Ultra Mobile Broadband), but the tech in UMB was very similar to Wimax and LTE anyway, so Verizon figured why not go LTE since it's going to be the standard among the GSM world anyway. And since they are the 1000 pound gorilla of GSM carriers here in the states, the other CDMA carriers are following along.
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