Apple might just follow Google into the world of MVNO cellular service

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Apple did something differently with the launch of its iPad Air 2, equipping the cell-enabled tablet with a SIM card that was all ready to work with the carrier of your choice – AT&T, T-Mobile, or Sprint – no carrier-specific SIM needed. And while we heard that Apple wasn’t too likely to bring a similar feature to the iPhone, it sure got us thinking about Apple, its relationship with carriers, and how its users get their cellular connectivity. Now a new report suggests the company’s ambitions are much larger than just a convenient SIM card, and that Apple may end up mirroring Google’s Project Fi strategy and introduce an Apple-branded MVNO of its own.

Supposedly, Apple’s already testing this MVNO in the States, and has been talking to European carriers about trying out the same sort of thing over there. Like Project Fi and Google, users would pay Apple directly for their cellular plans, and Apple would in turn negotiate with carriers to gain access to existing cellular networks.

We haven’t yet heard which specific carriers Apple might be working with, and there may be good reason for that: reportedly, Apple’s tests are still very far from anything like commercial deployment, and it could still be years before it works out just what it wants to do, and which companies it will need to partner with. But when that day comes, new tech like the rumored Siri-powered voicemail system we just heard about could end up laying the groundwork for its expansion into MVNO cellular service.

Source: Business Insider

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About The Author
Stephen Schenck

Stephen has been writing about electronics since 2008, which only serves to frustrate him that he waited so long to combine his love of gadgets and his degree in writing. In his spare time, he collects console and arcade game hardware, is a motorcycle enthusiast, and enjoys trapping blue crabs. Stephen’s first mobile device was a 624 MHz Dell Axim X30, which he’s convinced is still a viable platform. Stephen longs for a market where phones are sold independently of service, and bandwidth is cheap and plentiful; he’s not holding his breath. In the meantime, he devours smartphone news and tries to sort out the juicy bits

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