of Verizon's iPhone 4 sold out at approximately
8:10 p.m. EST Thursday night, according to a Verizon press release. Those strong
sales propelled the iPhone 4 to take the honor of becoming the fastest
selling pre-sale phone in Verizon's history.
Next Thursday -- on Feb. 10, 2011 -- the iPhone 4 will get a chance to set more
records when it officially launches at Verizon stores at 7 a.m.
Verizon and Apple did not reveal how many units of the phone were called for
during the pre-order, but stated that the demand was unprecedented. They
also would not say how many additional units would be available at stores at
launch. About the only thing they did say, was to post a message telling
customers to check back the night before -- Feb. 9 at 3:01 a.m. for the
possibility of more pre-order action.
The Verizon iPhone 4 earned largely positive reviews. Despite its
hardware being a bit dated by Android standards, its huge app library, new
Wi-Fi hotspot functionality, slick operating system (iOS 4.x), improved
reception, and remedied hardware issues led most reviewers to lavish it with
praise. About the only negative sentiments expressed were misgivings
about Verizon's policies/prices/fees and some reviews results
such as Engadget's which claimed Verizon's data network was slower
(a CNET story claimed the opposite).
And the phone also benefits from the fact that the majority of iPhone users
have lumped all the blame for various issues over the years on AT&T, by and
large, despite some problems being equally or more the fault of Apple.
Thus the jump to Verizon will likely please the iPhone-loving masses from
a pure cathartic perspective, even if the experience isn't night-and-day
different from their stay on AT&T.
Verizon is doing its best to rub its better coverage in AT&T's face.
Having long suffered from "I want the iPhone, do you have it?"
syndrome, the carrier now tastes sweet revenge in commercial form [video].
Iconic "Verizon Guy" Paul Marcarelli appears in a new add,
playing with his new iPhone toy as a voice narrates, "It's beautiful. It's
intelligent, even genius. But does your network work?"
At that point Verizon Guy's phone rings, and he answers it "Yes, I can
hear you now."
That's about as clear a shot at AT&T's voice service as you can get.
And it’s yet another example of Verizon's aggressive advertising attacks on its second
place rival that led to an unhappy AT&T unsuccessfully trying to sue Verizon, a little
over a year ago.
MacRumors is reporting that AT&T has gone into panic
mode, giving out free femtocells to iPhone customers to improve their quality
of service, in an effort to stave off Verizon. The femtocells provide
users with a bubble of high quality 3G coverage even in
areas where signal strength is typically weak.
AT&T can currently take comfort in the fact that it arguably offers the best Windows Phone 7 handset selection, though
they aren't exactly selling like crazy. As
Verizon closes in on picking up Windows Phone 7, as well, AT&T will
likely try to continue to beef up its Android and Windows Phone 7 portfolio to
attract new customers, even as iPhone users defect.