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I'm as convinced as ever that Verizon (NYSE: VZ ) needs the iPhone, but there's zero chance of Apple (Nasdaq: AAPL ) agreeing to do business with Verizon as it is today. The carrier has too many problems.
Over the weekend, Verizon admitted it mistakenly charged millions of customers data fees they didn't deserve because of what appears to have been a software bug. The carrier could end up paying as much as $90 million in refunds, media reports say.
But even that may not be enough. The Federal Communications Commission could also impose penalties for failing to notify customers about the problems, which, according to The New York Times, have been occurring since 2007.
Yeah, Verizon won't be doing business with Apple anytime soon. Not so much because it favors Motorola (NYSE: MOT ) and Google's (Nasdaq: GOOG ) Android platform over the iPhone -- though that does appear to be the case -- but because Steve Jobs isn't about to let broken technology anywhere near Apple's crown jewels.
Interestingly, Verizon CEO Ivan Seidenberg seems to know his company isn't ready to carry the iPhone. Here's an excerpt from comments he made at a recent Goldman Sachs conference:
We don't feel like we have an iPhone deficit. We would love to carry it when we get there, but we have to earn it. We have to show all the suppliers that we have equal treatment, and we have a network for people to put all of their equipment on. [Emphasis added.]
That's right, Mr. Seidenberg. You have to earn it, and you haven't yet.
Now it's your turn to weigh in. Will Verizon and Apple ever work together? Share your thoughts in the comments box below, and if you're interested in Verizon, click here to add it to your Foolish watch list.