iPhone: Is Verizon on the Horizon?

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I mentioned earlier this week that Apple (Nasdaq: AAPL  ) iPhone fans might be able to dial up Verizon (NYSE: VZ  ) as their carrier as early as the first quarter of next year. Yesterday, Bloomberg cited a couple of unidentified sources who say it will happen in January.

We can only speculate on who these "deep throat" informers are, but it wouldn't surprise me if the leak came from Verizon itself. (Both Verizon and Apple have no official comment.)

Put yourself in management's shoes. With each new iPhone sold, Verizon sees another user locked into a new two-year commitment with AT&T (NYSE: T  ) , a carrier that receives more than its share of customer complaints. If Verizon could just get out the word that the posse is on its way and arriving in January, maybe it could get a significant number of iPhone enviers to hold off until then.

Not so fast?
But let's put the brakes on this Verizon express for a moment. PC World reminds us we've heard all too often before that iPhone would be available on other carriers, and each time the rumors were untrue. There's also the fact that no outsider really knows the terms of the Apple-AT&T exclusivity contract; many believe it doesn't expire until 2012.

Still, Apple must be feeling giddy down to its core: It's in a win-win situation no matter when other carriers pick up its products. After reaping the considerable benefits of the exclusive contract with AT&T since 2007, it's set to sell an iBoatload of new iPhones once Verizon comes on board. UBS AG analyst John Hodulik told Bloomberg that number could be 12 million in the first year. The current large amount of promotion Verizon dishes out to Research In Motion's (Nasdaq: RIMM  ) BlackBerrys and to smartphones based on Google's (Nasdaq: GOOG  ) Android operating system will naturally diminish once iPhone is on board, and those rivals will certainly suffer the consequences.

If you were sure Verizon would offer the iPhone in January, would you hold off getting a new one until then? Let me know in the comments box below.

Fool analyst Rex Moore asks, "Can you hear me now?" He owns no companies mentioned in this article. Google is a Motley Fool Rule Breakers recommendation. Apple is a Motley Fool Stock Advisor selection. Try any of our Foolish newsletters today, free for 30 days. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

Read/Post Comments (13) | Recommend This Article (18)

Comments from our Foolish Readers

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  • Report this Comment On June 30, 2010, at 3:27 PM, eFlatfooted wrote:

    Yes, I would hold off until January.

  • Report this Comment On June 30, 2010, at 3:40 PM, Eristoga wrote:

    I have been waiting to dump my Blackberry storm (terrible excuse for a smartphone) until early 2011. If Verizon does not offer the iPhone, I will consider leaving Verizon. I don't view the current droid's as worthy alternatives!

  • Report this Comment On June 30, 2010, at 5:58 PM, 415el wrote:

    I've been waiting for a year already, I should have upgraded my phone last year when my Verizon contract was up.

    The droids are okay, but the iphone is the phone to have. I know about all the Droid Does and all of that, but the iPhone is what I want, not what it can do or "does."

  • Report this Comment On June 30, 2010, at 6:01 PM, kjbeck77 wrote:

    I'm holding off just on the 'hope' that Verizon will carry it! I currently use the iPhone 3GS with AT&T, and can't wait to switch carriers!

  • Report this Comment On June 30, 2010, at 6:01 PM, cbj1984 wrote:

    I actually ordered an iPhone 4 on the morning of June 29th, once I heard the story break on Bloomberg I cancelled the order. I'm holding onto my 3GS hoping the news that I've been waiting three years for finally comes through.

  • Report this Comment On June 30, 2010, at 6:04 PM, TMFTypeoh wrote:

    yup, ill wait till jan 1st.

    hopefully iphone 4 will be fixed by then

  • Report this Comment On June 30, 2010, at 7:06 PM, CRUS wrote:

    why would you wait to get onboard with "2

  • Report this Comment On June 30, 2010, at 9:30 PM, HODGEPODGE73 wrote:

    That's all I'm waiting for, the switch to Verizon!

  • Report this Comment On July 01, 2010, at 12:40 AM, bpc4me wrote:

    Calling CDMA old just screams lack of knowledge. Verizon's decision not to carry the iPhone can be seen as both a positve and a negative. It certainly held subscriber growth back. Apple is a great company, the iPhone is a great phone. But who's reputation suffered by carrying that phone? Who's network is the butt of jokes?. If there is one thing Verizon does well, it's that CDMA network. Should Verizon get an iPhone it's a win for all. If you haven't checked out the the Droid platform with the new Incredible and soon to be released Droid X, you are completely missing the boat here

  • Report this Comment On July 01, 2010, at 1:26 PM, Ringfinger wrote:

    I am 100% waiting for the I-Phone on Verizon. AT&T is unreiable as far as carriers go.

  • Report this Comment On July 03, 2010, at 8:49 AM, Rebeccabach wrote:

    I bought a Blackberry at Verizon and hated it. I donated it after 3 months and got an el-cheapo phone to replace it. My next phone will be an IPhone. I am willing to wait as long as I have a contract with Verizon and hopefully they will have the IPhone by then, otherwise I will switch to AT&T. I don't like AT&T but the IPhone is a must have.

  • Report this Comment On July 04, 2010, at 8:01 PM, PropofolPrincess wrote:

    Yes... I have held off with updating my phone with Verizon... waiting patiently for the I-Phone.... I like Verizon customer service and service in general. I have been with them since 1998. I really want the I-Phone!!

  • Report this Comment On July 05, 2010, at 1:43 PM, bpc4me wrote:

    Internationally, GSM does have a larger share of the market. No argument there. Side by side comparison of GSM and CDMA, CDMA is a better technology. Looking at the US specifically, the result is less dropped calls, better battery life and a clearer call to name a few, all benefits of CDMA. GSM also does not support data hence the data overlays. LTE will pretty much squash the while issue anyway.

    PS - LTE uses OFDM on the downlink which is another Qualcomm technology. :-)

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