Sometimes, covering the drama of the mobile phone industry is like watching TV. Just as I hoped and prayed for Sam and Diane to finally couple up (followed by Ross and Rachel, and now Finn and Rachel), I am watching the Verizon–iPhone situation with anticipation, looking for any inkling that these crazy kids might finally get together.
Many of you are saying, “No way.” Those “iDon’t/DroidDoes” ads were zingers, and Apple hasn’t historically been the forgiving type. But, as others of you have pointed out, this is business, and Verizon’s solid network rep and huge subscriber numbers make it a giant in the U.S. — one that the technology company couldn’t possibly ignore.
What everyone knows — including Verizon itself — is that the decision rests solely on Cupertino’s shoulders.
Despite the infamous campaign (which skewered the iPhone’s weak points), comments made today by Verizon CEO Ivan Seidenberg indicate that the mobile operator would easily do a 180 and embrace the iDon’t handset. During the company’s earnings call, he said that Verizon “obviously would be interested at any point in the future that they would be interested in having us as a partner.” He says the ball’s completely in Apple’s court.
Well… yeah, okay, that’s pretty much true. But let’s not overlook the fact that Verizon has a long tradition of making device manufacturers jump through hoops and monkeying with (even crippling) features that compete with what the carrier offers. That would make it more than just a matter of Apple forgiving the ad attack — It would need to be willing to get a dose of its own medicine to make this relationship work. Or Verizon would have to back off a bit. Is either likely? With so much potential earnings at stake, that is a ridiculously tough call to make.
But either way, if you believe the tech blogosphere, a CDMA version of iPhone is probably not in the cards. If it happens at all, it will probably land on Verizon’s developing LTE network.
Imagine it — a 4G iPhone on Verizon’s 4G network. Man, never have I wanted a coupling to happen so badly.
[via Engadget Mobile]