According to a leaked internal memo, AT&T is pressing Apple to follow along with the carrier's marketing strategy by allowing the iPhone 4S status bar to show the "4G" indicator. Although still a 3G device, the next-gen iPhone is capable of AT&T's HSPA+ network speeds, which the carrier is branding as 4G, although at the moment, true 4G is considered LTE or WiMAX.
The memo reveals that AT&T is currently working with Apple to update the network indicator to read "4G" and it seems as though Apple is open to the idea. The memo claims that the change will come in the form of an iOS update directly from Apple, although it did not say when the update would arrive.
However, Apple made it a point at its "Let's Talk iPhone" keynote not to claim the iPhone 4S as a 4G device. Apple's Phil Schiller treated the iPhone 4S as a 3G device but highlighted that the device was capable of 14.4Mbps speeds that was competitively fast. It'll be interesting to see if Apple ultimately concedes. The iPhone 4S will be available starting October 14 with pre-orders kicking off today.