This post serves as a brief summary of the technical specifications of the many radios in the Phone, iPad and the Apple Watch and as index for easier deeper exploration into each. Most of these are very broad categories (for example, there are many types of Bluetooth with differing data rates) and I’ll be linking each of these to more detailed breakdowns. 

Sorted by Range (Shortest to Longest)

NFC (Near Field Communication)

Availability: iPhone, Apple WatchRange: 0.1 mFrequency: 13.5 MHzData Rate: 0.4 MbpsDocs: Core NFC


Availability: iPhone, iPad and Apple WatchRange: 10mFrequency: 2.4 GHzData Rate: 1-3 MbpsDocs: Core Bluetooth, Core Bluetooth Programming Guide

UWB (Ultra Wide Band)

Availability: iPhone 11 or 12, Apple Watch Series 6Range: 50 mFrequency: 3.1 - 10.6 GHzData Rate: 100 MbpsDocs: Nearby Interaction


Availability: iPhone, iPad and Apple WatchRange: 125 mFrequency: 2.4 GHz and 5 GHzData Rate: Up to 866 Mbps

Cellular: 5G

Availability: iPhone, iPads (if equipped)Range: 300 mFrequency: 30 GHz - 300 GHzData Rate: 70 - 400 Mbps or faster

Cellular: 4G, LTE

Availability: iPhone, iPads (if equipped), Apple Watch (if equipped)Range: 15 kmFrequency: 700 MHz, 1700 - 2100 MHz, 1900 MHz, 2500 - 2700 MHzData Rate: 10 - 50 Mbps or faster

GPS (Global Positioning System)

Availability: iPhone, iPad (if equipped) and Apple WatchRange: 20 kmFrequency: 1575 MHz, 1227 MHz, 1176 MHzData Rate: 50 bpsNote: GLONASS and Galileo are also supported