Carrier Awaiting 4G LTE iPhone, Current Apple Handsets not 'Cutting Edge'

US Cellular Corp, the carrier who rejected Apple's iPhone 4S, has said its subscribers will have to wait a little longer before they accept an iPhone on their network.

According to Ted Carlson, CEO of US Cellular parent company TDS, they are committed to building up their own 4G LTE network. He also explained at the UBS Global Media and Communications Conference that signing a deal with Apple for the current models of iPhone is not a priority.

"We're never going to say never about the iPhone. (...) The iPhone for us would need to be at the cutting edge of where we're going, and then there might be an opportunity to consider it," Carlson explained.

He suggested that it would have to be an LTE iPhone or no iPhone at all on US Cellular's network. By the end of 2012 the carrier expects to have brought LTE to half of its subscribers, which currently stands at 6 million customers.

Full LTE coverage should be in place in three years according to TDS CFO Ken Meyers. Apple is said to be developing iPhone and iPad models with LTE capabilities, with recent reports claiming we will see the technology in both devices next year.