Of course, European iPhones will not be compatible with 5G millimeter, reserved for the United States. However, nothing dramatic: this technology should not influence the use of iPhone 12 in France for a long time to come.
You may have noticed, the American iPhone 12 all have a small black tab on the edge. Intriguing, it is necessary for the reception and transmission of a particular type of 5G, based on millimeter waves. We would therefore be tempted to tell ourselves that the European versions are less relevant than the American ones. However, for a French user, this should not change anything in use. Explanations.
A strategic location
As long as you live in France, this absence will not be felt in your daily life. Quite simply because the 5G millimeter will not be deployed before 2023 or 2024 in the country. For the moment, the 5G that the Hexagon is preparing to put in place is of a completely different type, it is the 5G Sub-6. This type of network uses waves positioned between 3.4 and 3.8 GHz while the 5G millimeter uses waves around 26 GHz. It is these very high frequency waves that promise spectacular throughput with minimal latency. But there is a flip side.
These millimeter waves have a very low penetrating power. So much so that the slightest obstacle could reduce its signal. So a hand or the rain could get in the way. You guessed it, this is where the little black tab on the edge of the iPhone 12 comes in. This one, made of imitated aluminum, offers more transparency and therefore better penetration by electromagnetic waves. No coincidence either if this tab is positioned at this precise location. While Apple appears to be producing its own 5G antennas, the location is considered optimal, according to reports from Qualcomm.
Will it be necessary to change iPhone when 5G millimeter arrives in France?
If only the United States embeds these millimeter antennas, it is at the expense of many countries, such as South Korea or Switzerland, which offer millimeter 5G to their citizens. They will not be able to take full advantage of their iPhone 12. In France, the renewal rate of a smartphone is 24 months, a little more than the world average of 20 months. It's just 2022, which is still a long way from the deployment of millimeter 5G in France. Especially since between the arrival of the network and its peak of efficiency, water will (again) flow under the bridges. Thus, only environmental considerations, which tend to lengthen the renewal rate of the mobile, and the purchase of refurbished, could dissuade the French buyer from setting his sights on the iPhone 12 in the absence of millimeter antennas.