Apple renames iPad in UAE after 4G concerns

Apple has renamed its new iPad for sale in the UAE, as part of a global rebranding exercise following concerns over the tablet's lack of 4G compatibility outside North America.

The technology giant officially launched the new iPad in the UAE last weekend, but has downplayed its 4G function - a big selling point of the device in the US.

 

Upon launch in the US, the cellular version of the new iPad was marketed as 'Wi-Fi + 4G', in reference to its support of super-fast mobile-internet connections.

But the device will not work as a 4G device in the UAE, because it uses a different frequency to that supported by Etisalat.

The top-of-the-range iPad is now being marketed as 'Wi-Fi + Cellular' on Apple's UAE retail website.

That is part of a global rebranding exercise, after Apple faced censure for the iPad's lack of compatibility with 4G networks outside of the US and Canada.

A disclaimer on the UAE site warns consumers that the new iPad does not support the super-fast networks available locally.

"4G LTE is supported only on AT&T networks in the U.S. and on Bell, Rogers, and Telus networks in Canada. See your carrier for details," it states.

The move follows a warning by the UAE's Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (TRA), which said in March that it would ask Apple to clarify that the new iPad is not compatible with local 4G networks upon its official launch in this market.

Apple has rebranded the iPad across all its global sites, after it faced pressure from authorities in the UK and Australia over the claims of 4G connectivity.

It has even changed the name of the device on its US website, where its 4G function does work.

In Australia, the consumer affairs regulator last month accused Apple of misleading consumers, because the iPad does not work as a 4G device in that country.

Published: May 14, 2012 04:00 AM

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