Strong LTE iPad Demand Good for Telcos

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Whatever Apple ( AAPL) makes, consumers will buy it even if tacks on tacks on additional fees.

TheStreet asked readers if they would buy the new iPad's high-speed version, which is one of its major selling points. Of the 621 people who responded, 54.4% of them said, "Yes. There is a definite need for the 4G network speeds with the new features on the iPad."

Baird Equity research analyst William Power did a survey noting that sales of the Long-Term Evolution (LTE) version of the new iPad have been stronger than previously thought. Power found that 36% of respondents plan to purchase the LTE-enabled version of the iPad. Previously, around 80% of iPad buyers purchased the Wi-Fi only version of the iPad. Both AT&T ( T) and Verizon ( VZ) offer the network to run LTE speeds in the United States.

Slightly more than a third of respondents, 33.97%, said they didn't think the high-speed was worth the additional price, and their home network was sufficient. The 16 GB Wi-Fi version of the iPad costs $499, while the 16 GB LTE version costs $629, plus whatever data a user gets from Verizon or AT&T. Plans range from $14.99 to $50 per month at AT&T, and $20 to $80 per month at Verizon.

More than 11% of respondents said they might consider purchasing the LTE version of the iPad, but they wanted to see what the difference in connection speed was between the LTE, or 4G service and their home networks.

More than 3 million new iPads were sold in its first weekend, the strongest launch yet, according to the company.

Shares of Apple were higher in early Tuesday trading, up 1% to $613.40.

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-- Written by Chris Ciaccia in New York

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