Rumor: Verizon iPhone Launching before Valentine’s Day

I have said it a dozen times before but let me reiterate: the Verizon iPhone will not be announced at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, January 6th through 9th. Apple does not attend CES events, CEO Steve Jobs never lets anyone but himself announce new products, and given all of Verizon’s 4G LTE announcements expected to go on there, why would Apple ever let anyone share the spotlight? Don’t worry though. BusinessWeek thinks that the Verizon iPhone will be announced before Valentine’s Day.

In fact, Apple is expected to throw one of its famous press events to announce the Verizon iPhone. Brace yourself for Job’s reality distortion field everyone. How will he boast about how Verizon’s network is the best for the iPhone while not leaving AT&T customers with iPhones feeling like they’ve been left out in the cold? I’m sure he’s got some magic up the sleeves of his black turtleneck.

One question being asked is how AT&T will take the blow of losing iPhone exclusivity. While Verizon is lauded as one of the most reliable networks in the country, Consumer Reports has come to the conclusion that “AT&T is now positioned in last place overall and in almost every market we rate” for call quality, Internet access and customer service. Could AT&T’s decision to raise its early contract cancellation fee from $175 to $325 be an attempt to keep its customers from fleeing once Verizon gets the iPhone?

Switching from AT&T to Verizon would be very costly for those still in the middle of a contract. Besides the $325 cancelation fee, a new iPhone would have to be purchased. Verizon’s network uses a technology called CDMA while AT&T uses a technology called GSM that is much more popular globally. The two are not compatible. The price of switching is over $500…

Customers might wait for an iPhone model with 4G LTE technology inside before making the switch in large numbers. Of course, once AT&T gets its LTE network up and running, many of its bandwidth congestion problems will be a thing of the past. We’ll have to wait and see how long it takes Verizon to bring its 4G network national, Apple to build a 4G capable iPhone and AT&T to get its own 4G network out to enough customers to justify bothering with it.

Are you willing to switch from AT&T to Verizon just to have a Verizon iPhone instead of one from AT&T? Let me know.

Tags: , , ,