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Steve Jobs once contemplated having his own wireless network built on Wi-Fi spectrum

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According to John Stanton, Steve Jobs once thought about owning his own wireless network. The network would've been built on the unlicensed spectrum that Wi-Fi uses. Jobs gave up on the idea sometime around 2007.

Steve Jobs
Steve Jobs

It seems that in addition to building his own TV, Steve Jobs also had unfulfilled plans to own a wireless network. Wireless industry legend John Stanton related his past discussions with the Apple founder this week, and revealed Jobs' desire to use Wi-Fi spectrum to replace mobile carriers. Stanton spoke at the Law Seminars International event in Seattle, where IDG News was in attendance. Reportedly, Jobs gave up on the idea around 2007, which would be sometime near the release of the original iPhone on AT&T.

We don't know what he was planning, but the choice to use the 2.4GHz and 5GHz Wi-Fi bands are surprising considering how congested they can be — practically anyone can make use of those bands for their own devices. This could potentially be the reason why Jobs eventually decided against using it to build his own network, but there is also the possibility that he had other ideas for Wi-Fi in mind — perhaps VoIP? A wireless network would have fit perfectly with Apple's attempt to control every part of its ecosystem, but with that out of the picture, it seems the company will have to settle with working with carriers, even if it has to make compromises.