How to Distinguish GSM iPhone 4 from CDMA iPhone 4

No idea what are all the differences between iPhone 4 (GSM) and iPhone 4 (CDMA)? This article will elaborate on the differences between these 2 iPhone 4 models from the aspects of external differences, identification differences, functional differences as well as battery life differences.

External Differences:

It's hard to tell the differences between iPhone 4 (GSM), which is only available on AT&T in the US and the following released iPhone (CDMA), Which is available on Verizon and Sprint in the US at the first glance, which look identical, but take a closer look, there are two major differences.

Credit: Apple, Inc. (GSM Model-Left, CDMA Model-Right)

Though both models use the same general all stainless steel body design and a thin "metal band" that wraps around the sides of each phone, however, the GSM model has an access panel on and an enclosed Micro SIM card on the right side, while the CDMA model has neither of them.

In addition, as it may be seen from the above promotional pictures, the GSM model has three antenna "breaks" in the metal band, one on the left side of the top and one on each side toward the bottom, while CDMA model has four, two on both sides toward the top and bottom).

Identification Differences:

Another way to identify the iPhone 4 models as well as all other iPhone models is by the model number printed in small type on the back of the phone.

As you can see from the above, it's the model number is A1332, which is printed on the back of the GSM-equipped iPhone 4, and the model number printed on the back of the CDMA-equipped iPhone 4 is A1349, and A1387 for the subsequently released model iPhone 4S.

Functional Differences:

From the perspective of functions, the major change is that the GSM-equipped iPhone 4 supports the EDGE "2D" mobile wireless standard as well as 3G networking with more cellular carriers worldwide, on the other hand, the iPhone model that supports CDMA is considerably more limited in respect to global coverage. There are other limitations of CDMA, such as, inability to place a call on hold whereas GSM model does, and that the conference calls are limited to two calls rather than five.

Battery Life Differences:

Due to support of different networks, their batter life is also different, except for the audio playback, video playback, talk time on 3G, internet use on Wi-Fi, internet use on 3G and standby time are all the same, the GSM-equipped model provides an estimated fourteen hours of talk time over a 2G network, which is not available for CDMA-equipped iPhone 4 model.

And these are pretty much the major differences between iPhone 4 (GSM) and iPhone 4 (CDMA), after going through this article, it shouldn't be a problem for you to distinguish the GSM-equipped iPhone 4 from the CDMA-equipped iPhone 4.

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/ Posted by Jerry Cook to iPhone Follow @Jerry Cook