Verizon iPhone Rumor Just Won’t Die

| Rumor

Rumors that Apple is building a special version of the iPhone for Verizon’s wireless network just keep coming, and the latest batch claim that this time a deal really is in the works for a January 2011 launch.

For this rumor, Bloomberg cites “two people familiar with the plans” who remained anonymous because an official announcement hasn’t been made yet. As always, Apple and Verizon chose not to comment on the rumor.

Assuming that there really is a deal this time, launching a Verizon-compatible version of the iPhone would give Apple access to a network that includes about 92.8 million customers. It would also mean the end of Apple’s exclusive iPhone deal with AT&T.

Despite the hopes and dreams of cell phone users looking for any option other than AT&T, there isn’t any tangible proof that this rumor is any more legit than the long list of Verizon deal rumors that came before it. Unless Apple and Verizon release an official announcement, chalk this up as just another unsubstantiated rumor.



The Cassandra Corollary:
If you predict something long enough it will come true.

I’ll believe it when it happens.

Lee Dronick

And of course the “mainstream” news outlets are reporting this as if it were a fact and not the fact that it is an unsubstantiated rumor.

I am thinking that AT&T doesn’t want to let go of this cash cow and is working closely with Apple to keep the iPhone exclusively on their network. Beefing up the network, and all of that.

John F. Braun

My best friend’s sister’s boyfriend’s brother’s girlfriend heard from this guy who knows this kid who’s going with the girl that said Verizon will have an iPhone in 2011.  It must be pretty serious.


I seem to remember reading an article on TMO that said AT&T had a contract that makes them the only iPhone provider in the US until 2012.

A contract in the hand is worth any number of unsubstantiated rumours in the bush.


Isn?t there an intrinsic technical limitation with CDMA preventing an iPhone (or any other smartphone) from being able to use 3G data while on a voice call? (If that limitation has somehow been overcome, I haven?t found any news of it, yet.)

Wouldn?t that CDMA data/voice limitation make Verizon iPhones conspicuously inferior functionally to ATT or TMobile iPhones?  And wouldn?t all those much-less-impressed Verizon iPhone users degrade the iPhone brand value generally?


All 3G uses CDMA, including AT&T’s HSPA network. So it is not a limitation of CDMA but Verizon’s version they are using, which is CDMA2000, Rev. A. An upcoming version called Voice over Rev A, would add simultaneous voice and data. It might all be moot in another year or so when both AT&T and Verizon roll out their 4G networks, both of which use the European LTE (long-term evolution) CDMA/OFDM network.

Ross Edwards

Isn?t there an intrinsic technical limitation with CDMA preventing an iPhone (or any other smartphone) from being able to use 3G data while on a voice call?

The Verizon CDMA BlackBerry Curve, among other phones, can be used for a voice call and data (browser, SMS, apps, whatever) simultaneously.  Just use the “switch application” command from the BB menu.  “Phone” is treated as just another app, so once you’re on your call, you can switch back to surfing the web and your call will continue uninterrupted.

I suspect the reason that original FUD became entrenched was that early CDMA smartphones simply lacked that feature for whatever hardware or software reason.  It was never an inherent limitation of the CDMA transmission standard.  Or, to put it another way, there is plenty wrong with CDMA… just not THAT.

Of course Verizon is migrating to LTE starting later this year anyway, so it will become a moot point.  Especially considering AT&T is also migrating to LTE.  I love all things Apple, but I don’t do business with AT&T.  I’ll be eligible for a new phone next spring… if iPhone is on Verizon, I’m in.  If not, no worries.  The BBC has performed well and I have no qualms with staying with it.

A contract in the hand is worth any number of unsubstantiated rumours in the bush.

Any contract of that magnitude will have opt-out clauses and remedies for breach incorporated into it.  I assure you, whatever the cost of the opt-out or remedy is, is going to be a fart in a tornado compared to Apple gaining access to a market pool of 90 million more users.  Apple hasn’t opted out from AT&T yet for the simple reason that they haven’t had to.  They continue to sell iPhones as fast as they can produce them.  At some point they’ll calculate that they are approaching saturation with AT&T and they’ll make their move to add other carriers.


“All 3G uses CDMA, including AT&T?s HSPA network.”

Thanks for cluing me in to that - now I obviously need to learn a lot more about CDMA, TDMA & GSM than I thought I (sort of) knew. 

So, it seems your’e telling me that AT&T’s GSM is a form of Code Division Multiple Access (CDMA) ?


CDMA is a transport-level protocol where the signals for multiple calls are combined together, each with a unique code that allows the receiver to decode the individual calls within the combined signal. What is referred to as GSM is the air interface protocol.

EDGE, otoh, is a TDMA-based protocol where TDMA sends individual calls over the air in a time-spliced manner, hence it’s name, Time Division, Multiple Access (versus Code Division Multiple Access for CDMA).

So under the old 2G GSM used TDMA. Under 3G, GSM uses a different transport protocol, CDMA, one that was far superior to TDMA, using lower power with clearer signal. It’s actually funny that CDMA calls actually have no background noise while TDMA calls sometime sound like a wind tunnel. But because the CDMA signal was so clear on a good signal (all calls sound choppy on a bad signal), vendors had to create background noise so people, who were used to noise on the call, kept hanging up and redialing because they thought the call had dropped.

With 4G, no matter if it’s Wimax or LTE or the now defunct UMB, all of the above use a new multi-path protocol called OFDM. The air interface for LTE is very close to GSM so the Europeans went for LTE, making equipment upgrades cheaper and easier. UMB would have been the natural upgrade path for CDMA2000, but Verizon choosing LTE basically killed UMB. Verizon’s European parent company, Vodafone, was going LTE, so the choice for Verizon was decided for them.


@tb1 - thanks for opening that window affording me a much improved view,

Log in to comment (TMO, Twitter or Facebook) or Register for a TMO account