Verizon will not be engaging in its usual practice of side-loading apps onto iPhones, according to Apple Vice President Phil Schiller. Mr. Schiller told Ars Technica that Apple intends for the iPhone experience to be consistent whichever carrier they might be using.
“We want the experience to be the same for every iPhone user. So there are no special Verizon Apps preinstalled,” Mr. Schiller said. “AT&T offers customers some apps via the App Store. I’ll let Verizon comment if they are working on anything for that.”
Verizon’s iPhone won’t look like this
Verizon is all but notorious for installing its own apps onto devices, and in some cases the company has made it all but impossible for users to uninstall these apps. For instance, one Android device has Bing and other Microsoft services replacing Google’s search engine and related apps. To remove these side-loaded apps, users would have to jailbreak their phones.
Whether or not Verizon would do the same with an iPhone was the subject of debate amongst Apple pundits and other observers, with anyone unfamiliar with Apple CEO Steve Jobs arguing that Verizon wouldn’t give in on this issue. Side-loaded apps are a solid revenue stream for carriers, just as they are for PC makers - Apple doesn’t put side-loaded apps on its Macs, either.
Ars Technica also noted that Verizon’s iPhone FAQ said that its iPhones would come pre-loaded with a hotspot app, but that this is really a system setting and not an app at all.