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The Wall Street Journal says the iPhone is coming to Verizon early next year.  (Source: FoneArena)
New carrier is unlikely to turn back the Android tide, but should make Apple a tidy sum of cash

Since the launch of the iPhone one critical factor has remained constant.  In the smartphone's biggest market -- the United States -- the iPhone was sold exclusively on AT&T.  But that's about to change.

The Wall Street Journal claims that multiple sources brief by Apple have said that a CDMA iPhone will land early next year on Verizon's network.  CDMA is Verizon's 3G tech of choice.  Sprint also uses CDMA, while T-Mobile and AT&T utilize GSM, a rival standard.

The iPhone undeniably helped AT&T hang on to its second place spot in the U.S.  However, many customers -- particularly in 2007 and 2008 -- were disgruntled about AT&T's poor voice network.  While AT&T has made a concerted effort to improve, the experience has still left a bitter taste in many's mouth, and many still hold a negative opinion about the carrier's quality of service. 

Meanwhile the iPhone is struggling to stave off dozens of handsets sporting Google's Android operating system which have flooded the U.S. market.  Android has already passed the iPhone in U.S. sales and analysts generally believe that it is only a matter of time before it does the same worldwide.  More worrisome for Apple, interest in the iPhone is also dropping.

A shift to Verizon, the nation's largest carrier, could help Apple somewhat with both problems. According to James Ratcliffe at Barclays Capital, a Verizon iPhone would grow the carrier's subscriber base by 900,000 in 2011 and sell 9 million iPhones in total (most sales going to existing customers).  Hudson Square Research, on the other hand, believes that Verizon could gain even more new subscribers, estimating that 4 million iPhone users would switch from AT&T -- roughly 18 percent of AT&T's iPhone subscriber base.

Verizon Communications Inc. President Lowell McAdam refused to confirm or deny the rumors of an Apple deal, stating, "At some point our business interests are going to align.  I fully expect it, but I don't have anything to say."

The report offers a lot of compelling details to support its claims that the Verizon iPhone is real.  It claims that Pegatron Technology Corp., a contract manufacturer subsidiary of Taiwanese electronics giant Asustek Computer Inc. won the contract to produce the phone.  And reportedly Qualcomm is providing the CDMA chipset for the new phone, though the form factor will stay the same.

A Verizon iPhone was already prophesied earlier this year by 
Bloomberg, which says the phone will land in January (coinciding with one of Apple's typical product launch times).  However, one of the sources briefed by Apple told The Wall Street Journal offers a new piece of information -- Apple is also working on a different form factor of its popular device.

If it truly exists, the real question is whether this form factor is bigger or smaller than the existing iPhone.  A likely scenario seems a smaller candy-bar like phone, similar to the iPod Nano 5G.

The need for a Verizon iPhone is illustrated most clearly by subscriber numbers.  According to market researchers at Comscore, in August 2009 there were only 866,000 Android smartphones, compared to 7.8 million iPhones in the U.S.  In August 2010 Android had exploded to 10.9 million phones, while Apple managed an impressive, but lesser growth to 13.5 million handsets.

Ultimately despite the "danger" of getting passed by Android, the release of a Verizon iPhone may be more about bumping up profit and less about staving off its competitor.  After all, Apple currently has only 2.8 percent market share in the global phone market, but it makes 39 percent of its profits thanks to its ability to move less-than-premium hardware at premium prices and its aggressive negotiation of supply deals.  Android eventually passing Apple seems inevitable, even if Apple does launch a Verizon iPhone, but the new phone could send the already profitable company soaring to new heights in profitability.

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RE: I hope this is true...
By Sazabi19 on 10/7/2010 9:24:49 AM , Rating: 3
Why not get an android based phone then? They have apps for music... they even have 1 built in. I'm not seeing the problem here or the reason why you NEED an iPhone for music purposes. That is stupid honestly.

RE: I hope this is true...
By rickcole3 on 10/7/2010 9:31:52 AM , Rating: 2
Instead of calling the person stupid perhaps you may consider that there is a reason they want the iOS interface? They could have an extensive library of iTunes songs and don't want to convert them all to mp3? Perhaps they prefer the interface of iOS? Just because people don't jump over to your choice of mobile operating system doesn't make them "stupid". It's called consumer choice. You made one with Android. Why belittle someone for preferring something else?

RE: I hope this is true...
By Raraniel on 10/7/2010 9:33:13 AM , Rating: 5
He needs the iphone 4. Give him the iphone 4. The one with the bigger gee-bees.

RE: I hope this is true...
By xpax on 10/7/2010 11:48:48 AM , Rating: 5
I don't care.

RE: I hope this is true...
By DN23 on 10/7/2010 1:27:52 PM , Rating: 4
This F-ing thing prints money!

RE: I hope this is true...
By deltadeltadelta on 10/12/2010 10:59:18 AM , Rating: 1
I do not care.

RE: I hope this is true...
By sviola on 10/7/2010 10:38:57 AM , Rating: 3
I think what he is saying is that there are options in Verizon that would fit her needs (phone+music player) that she could have right away, so her complain is just unnecessary.

But I agree with you on the name calling...

RE: I hope this is true...
By charrytg on 10/7/2010 12:07:59 PM , Rating: 2
So it wouldn't be stupid to change a carrier just so that you could have a particular brand of smartphone, but it would be stupid to suck it up and stick with the carrier you like, and get a comparable smartphone?

RE: I hope this is true...
By Sazabi19 on 10/7/2010 1:02:51 PM , Rating: 2
I think you have read what i said wrong. I said THAT was stupid, not the person. People are not stupid for ideologies, they are stupid becuase of what they do.

RE: I hope this is true...
By Ammohunt on 10/7/2010 2:24:52 PM , Rating: 2
True but extremely ignorant people follow leftist ideologies doesn't that make them temporarily stupid?

RE: I hope this is true...
By omnicronx on 10/7/2010 2:25:59 PM , Rating: 2
Does the interface make the music sound any better?

Consumer choice is just that, a choice, but it does not make said choice logical by any means..

Perhaps he uses the iPod for iOS apps too, that you could not get on Android, but if Music is the only reason he carries around two devices then you really have to wonder if he is just trying to validate his purchase of an iPhone4..

(battery life which is always my concern does not seem to be an issue either, as he seems content with having one device if it fits 'his needs')

RE: I hope this is true...
By omnicronx on 10/7/2010 2:27:36 PM , Rating: 2
Heck perhaps the guy does not have a smartphone at all..

I know many people that have a 5 year old phone, but got an iPod touch to fill the void.

Who knows ;)

RE: I hope this is true...
By Devo2007 on 10/7/2010 10:19:54 AM , Rating: 2
Find me a GOOD Android app that does gapless playback as well as an iPhone/iPod Touch and I'll bite. Museek & Lithium are the only apps I've seen to promise it. Museek sucks (I kept getting errors while scanning my media collection), and Lithium's gapless playback never worked for me.

RE: I hope this is true...
By meepstone on 10/7/2010 10:39:19 AM , Rating: 1
Can't wait 2 seconds? Doesn't seem like a big deal to me. But then again i dont have a.d.d.

RE: I hope this is true...
By bollwerk on 10/7/2010 11:58:48 AM , Rating: 1
Gapless playback is important for albums that are continuous mixes. I listen to a lot of house/trance music and nearly all of it is a continuous mix from beginning to end. There was a time when itunes (and the ipod) didn't have gapless playback and it was really annoying.

RE: I hope this is true...
By dark matter on 10/7/2010 7:44:31 PM , Rating: 2
This begs the question, why break up a continuous mix into separate tracks in the first place.

Why not make one really large MP3

RE: I hope this is true...
By charrytg on 10/7/2010 12:10:07 PM , Rating: 2
Don't use low quality storage, and you won't have gaps. You would not have noticed this with an apple product, as they do not give you freedom of choice with storage.

RE: I hope this is true...
By MozeeToby on 10/7/2010 12:21:33 PM , Rating: 1
First and foremost, that just isn't true. The gap is caused by the way the MP3 format is defined, it has nothing to do with storage at all. From the Wiki:
Most lossy audio compression schemes add a small amount of silence to the beginning of a track. One reason that this happens is because many such schemes involve a time/frequency domain transform (such as an MDCT) which can introduce gaps called encoder delay. These gaps can be enlarged at decode time when a reverse-MDCT is performed, because the reverse transform will also introduce gaps (decoder delay) of its own.
It's something you have to program around and it isn't as easy a problem to solve as one might expect, especially as different encoders will add different amounts of delay (you can't just cut the first X seconds of the track and hope). A single field on the MP3 header that records the encoder-delay would go a long way to addressing the problem, leaving only the decoder delay (which the decoder should be able to calculate and remove) but that field is not present in the MP3 standard.

There is at least one app on the marketplace that seems to do gapless playback, the Museek Music Player. Reviews vary wildly from excellent to horrible, so if you're interested you'll just have to try it out and see for yourself. A better solution would be to put your music in a format that doesn't introduce the delays, Ogg Vorbis or FLAC for instance. Finding a music source that supplies those formats is left as an exercise to the ready.

RE: I hope this is true...
By Cheesew1z69 on 10/7/2010 10:23:39 AM , Rating: 2
Mine has a music app built into already, works great, I can drag and drop mp3 right to my phone and start playing right away.

RE: I hope this is true...
By psenechal on 10/7/10, Rating: 0
RE: I hope this is true...
By MozeeToby on 10/7/2010 5:25:02 PM , Rating: 2
Actually, legitimately curious, not trolling:

What kinds of apps don't have equivalents on Android? And have you checked recently? When I got my Droid a year ago there were plenty of apps that I wished I could get but that has changed quite rapidly (though I still can't order a Chipotle burrito on my Droid, which would make me sad if I lived near a Chipotle).

RE: I hope this is true...
By kmmatney on 10/7/2010 6:02:44 PM , Rating: 2
The thing about the Apple store is that you just have to get an App once, and you can use it on all your devices - iPod, iPhone, and iPad.

RE: I hope this is true...
By UnWeave on 10/7/10, Rating: 0
RE: I hope this is true...
By dark matter on 10/7/2010 7:47:08 PM , Rating: 2
Widely regarded doesn't mean it's a fact. A mean, people still bought the iPhone despite all the numerous faults with it. Just because a lot of people say something, doesn't mean it actually is.

RE: I hope this is true...
By UnWeave on 10/11/2010 1:25:24 PM , Rating: 2
The level of Apple-hate on here really astounds me.

"The iPhone 4 has the best sound quality of any smartphone [currently available]" is a fact, or as close as it can be. Google it, go look on audio forums, read opinions of those who know what they are taking about and THEN rate me down if you still disagree. And I can't believe anyone took issue with my comment that, if the user already has iTunes purchases, it makes sense to get an iPhone.

I guess it's just not possible to say something good about something with an Apple logo on it and get away with it.

RE: I hope this is true...
By lantzn on 10/7/10, Rating: 0
RE: I hope this is true...
By Belard on 10/8/2010 5:31:58 AM , Rating: 2
I have an new Android... I like it.

In one of our offices, there are 4 guys with iPhones and were reading how Android was taking over the market and asked me what I thought.

My opinion... keep what they have. It works and they are happy.

I'm not much into MP3/music on my phone - so an Android was a better fit for me. There are MANY apps for the iPhone that are not out for Android... but I'd say in a year or so, that's going to change.

RE: I hope this is true...
By adiposity on 10/8/2010 1:39:42 PM , Rating: 2
Why not get an android based phone then? They have apps for music... they even have 1 built in. I'm not seeing the problem here or the reason why you NEED an iPhone for music purposes. That is stupid honestly.

This is a pretty ignorant comment. For most people who have iPhones/iPods, music is not even the #1 use. The #1 use is is apps/games. This is also the same for Android. To tell someone to get an Android phone over an iPhone just because they both have music is...retarded.

I vastly prefer my Droid over an iPhone. But it does have annoying flaws:

1. cannot edit previous entered search (Droid2 fixes this with blur)
2. Cannot undelete e-mails in imap mode (or move between folders at all)
3. cannot use touchscreen to "bubble-focus" on text, making it hard to edit on screen text (Droid2 fixes this with blur)
4. Phone screen activates when making a bluetooth call, even when in your pocket. This leads to pocket pressing of mute, speakerphone, and numbers.
5. Bluetooth voice-dial is terrible (and only exists in 2.2). It does not give you a chance to confirm who it is dialing, but rather, just DIALS! And since the recognition is so bad...that gets really annoying.
6. I have to turn wireless on/off frequently to get connected to WIFI. I also have to reset bluetooth on occasion to get it to connect.
7. There is no built-in way of setting wallpapers that doesn't drastically down-sample your images. I am forced to use "wallpaper set and save" (a working but annoyingly designed program) to use images I designed to be exactly my screen resolution.

Now, I love my Droid, and for obvious reasons, prefer it over an iPhone. But with the exception of #6, my GF's iPhone does not have any of these problems. It's kind of embarrassing.

The question of apps is still heavily in favor of iPhone as well, but at least we are catching up on that front. Google really needs to fix some of these Android annoyances. At least motorola/htc are addressing some of them.

"You can bet that Sony built a long-term business plan about being successful in Japan and that business plan is crumbling." -- Peter Moore, 24 hours before his Microsoft resignation

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