Freemium Internet service provider FreedomPop is facing delays in shipping its WiMAX-capable iPhone Sleeve because of the FCC. The Sleeve fits over the iPhone 4 and 4S to replace the devices’ standard 3G connectivity with FreedomPop’s 4G service.
But the FCC has yet to approve one of its design elements, and so far, that delay has cost Freedom Pop $550,000.
As part of the design of FreedomPop’s iPhone Sleeve, the WiMax radio sits right next to the iPhone’s cellular radio, FreedomPop CEO Stephen Stokols said in an interview with Firece Wireless. But since the FCC has never tested a device with a “radio-against-radio” design,” the agency had to do more extensive testing, therefore slowing down its approval process.
FreedomPop had been taking pre-orders for the Sleeve, but has since stopped due to the delay. Once the FCC approves the sleeve, which Stokols says should be within the next few weeks, FreedomPop will immediately start shipping the 5,000 pre-ordered cases.
FreedomPop also makes and currently sells a similar sleeve for the iPod Touch. The company also plans to sell LTE-capable cases for Android devices in about six months.
FreedomPop was founded in July 2011 and has raised about $7.5 million to date.