AT&T and T-Mobile have led the charge over the past year to brand their upgraded HSPA+ networks as "4G," even though such networks historically don't fall into the "4G" definition -- and considering that AT&T is in the process of rolling out LTE concurrently, it can be a confusing message for customers to hear. That said, there's no sign of AT&T's network branding effort slowing down, but here's a bit of a shocker: the carrier is apparently "working with Apple" to change the indicator in the iPhone 4S (which tops out at 14.4Mbps, up from the iPhone 4's 7.2Mbps) to show "4G" in the status bar as well. That's surprising considering Apple's general reluctance over the past four years to bow to carrier pressure on... well, pretty much anything — and what's more, the indicator will require an iOS update to enable.
We've reached out to AT&T for comment; more on this as we get it.
Update: AT&T confirms that the companies are indeed "working together" on it, emphasizing that "customers will get 4G speeds from day one" regardless.