To be honest, we’re extremely tired of writing about the potential Verizon iPhone. Everyone knows that the iPhone 4 exclusivity contracts are either recently expired, will expire soon or invalidated by AT&T’s terrible representation of a great Apple product. We can’t pick one source for this article… it’s been discussed by countless sources since the 1st generation iPhone came out in 2007. Instead of getting your hopes up, we’ll give you all of the reasons the iPhone won’t be coming to Verizon any time soon (was that too confident?).
If you’re reading this website, you probably know this: the iPhone 4 cannot work on Verizon. Unlocking your iPhone can only get you to T-Mobile here in the United States and maybe some smaller carriers that piggyback on the GSM networks. Let’s go further… current iPhone hardware uses GSM technology to reach your cell provider. GSM is a well-utilized standard across the world: Verizon is one of the few networks using CDMA. Hardware is the main reason a Verizon rollout would be difficult.
Since Verizon uses different standards, Apple would have to design and manufacture a completely different iPhone model. Remember, the CDMA market-share is small — so small that Apple may not consider the manufacturing costs worth the effort. It also dilutes the shopping experience (something Apple tries to avoid) by offering two incompatible models to choose from… and we all know that people aren’t smart enough to buy the right version. Before you make the argument that Apple could use “world phone” technology and combine the two standards into one unit… no unit exists in a reasonable enough size to fit into the iPhone. The technology is already in development, but far from a release date.
Simultaneous Voice and Data
Verizon’s CEO recently said that they have to earn the iPhone. Part of that comes down to the fact that Verizon does not allow voice and data usage at the same time. Verizon customers cannot talk on the phone and type in an address into their maps app at the same time. Some people don’t care about this feature, we think they’re stupid. We remember the days of the 1st generation EDGE iPhone… they sucked. If your phone doesn’t do this already, you probably don’t even know what it’s like to miss it. Now that we have that feature, we’d never switch to a network that couldn’t provide it. Verizon is working on revised infrastructures that would allow simultaneous use of voice and data, but we haven’t heard an activation date. It seems like a pretty far stretch for Apple to release a feature-stripped version of their best selling device, doesn’t it?
LTE or what we call 4G
What if Apple decided to wait until they could make one phone that would work universally with all of the networks across the world? Well, we don’t see that as likely but LTE is as close as they’re going to get. AT&T and Verizon have already signed onto the LTE bandwagon for their 4G networks, most international carriers are heading that direction as well. In fact, there’s a current push to make LTE the international standard for 4G networks. That means they’ll be running the same technology (albeit at different frequencies) and Apple would be able to ship one device to cover every carrier worldwide. That would rid the additional manufacturing costs from the equation completely. However, there has been a depressing discussion going around the internet: Apple may choose to delay the 4G iPhone until 2012 due to the infancy of carrier infrastructure. Verizon is rolling out limited coverage in 30 major cities by the end of the year and AT&T is not far behind. That doesn’t seem like enough coverage to warrant a 4G iPhone and may be the reason we don’t see the device come to Verizon until 2012.
Have we killed your dreams yet?
Who are we to say that the iPhone 4 won’t come to Verizon in January? Everyone’s hoping for it: we know people who are jumping ship and using Android phones so they don’t have to renew their AT&T contracts… but is it realistic? No, not at all. There are too many outside factors that point to 2012 as the year of ViPhone to consider this January a viable option. If Apple does put out a Verizon iPhone within the next 6 months, they’re doing all of us a favor. That one carrier addition would cost lots of money for the small sliver of time remaining for 3G technology. We have several bets discounting the January release of a Verizon iPhone. Some of us want to eat our words and others really don’t want to follow through with the terms of the bet, but all of us will be happy to finally stop writing about the never-ending ViPhone rumors. For the love of God, make them stop.