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Oh snap, Verizon just gave a dig at AT&T's voice coverage in its new iPhone commercial.  (Source: Verizon via YouTube)

With pre-order quotas already sold out, the iPhone 4 prepares to land on Verizon's network next Thursday.  (Source: Android Community)
AT&T's efforts to roll out femtocells may not be enough to stave off the hungry iPhone

Pre-orders 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. 



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RE: They were meant to be sold out!
By michael2k on 2/5/2011 8:42:09 PM , Rating: 2
So how popular? Half a million? One million? No other phone sells like this. The only way this could have been avoided is if Apple had stockpiled 3m iPhones for Verizon, and that's crazy. Thats an entire month of manufacturing ready for a single day. More cost effective to not stockpile and just do normal manufacturing, which means no need to warehouse iPhones for over a month.


RE: They were meant to be sold out!
By Alexstarfire on 2/5/2011 9:16:27 PM , Rating: 2
They have to be storing these new Verizon iPhones somewhere until they launch. I don't see how storing more of them until that day changes the cost effectiveness much, if at all.


RE: They were meant to be sold out!
By michael2k on 2/7/2011 2:11:32 PM , Rating: 2
Let me try to explain:
Start stockpiling the last week of January
Continue stockpiling until the last week of February
Warehouse costs for a month for 4m phones and push back delivery until March 10th.

Don't stockpile, instead start manufacturing the last week of January
Deliver 1m phones the first week of February
Keep manufacturing and have another 1m phones the second week of February
Etc, so by the end of March they will have manufactured, shipped, and sold 4m phones.

Identical end effect, but they can start shipping 4 weeks earlier and not incur the storage costs for the first three weeks of manufacturing.


RE: They were meant to be sold out!
By Alexstarfire on 2/7/2011 2:35:07 PM , Rating: 2
I think I understand, but what you say only makes perfect sense if they don't use a warehouse period. If they are already paying for a warehouse then what I said holds true even if it makes more sense to do what you say, though you'd still be right about the release date and end effect either way.


By michael2k on 2/8/2011 2:54:12 AM , Rating: 2
The difference is scope. Stockpiling requires 4x as much warehouse space as not. It also means any phone manufactured in the first week would arrive with nearly 0% battery.


By Targon on 2/5/2011 10:43:32 PM , Rating: 2
No other phone gets this much hype and marketing behind it, even the Verizon Droid phones don't push this much.

You have to look at this from a logical breakdown of people who will be buying the iPhone on Verizon, just to give some perspective...

You have the people in areas with known bad cell phone reception, yet people ran out to buy the iPhone with AT&T. These people will run to Verizon without checking if Verizon is any better in their area because they assume that it is just the fault of AT&T, not that they live in the middle of nowhere.

You have the people who were on Verizon and who did not switch to AT&T just to get the iPhone, yet they DID want the iPhone.

You will have the people who disliked AT&T previously who wanted the iPhone but didn't want to go to AT&T for it.

Many people will make the shift to the Verizon version of the iPhone....and will find they are just as unhappy if not more unhappy with Verizon than they were on AT&T. The grass is always greener on the other side, right?

In any sort of shift, you add up all of the above, and you get a lot of sales, no question there, but the results over the next two years after the new two year contracts are signed are what people should be paying attention to. Many people replaced their iPhone 3GS that they bought only a year before the iPhone 4, and while the sales numbers are there, these customers did not increase the percentage of users with an iPhone. If you replace your phone, you do not have TWO phones, you have one with one sitting on a shelf or sent over to eastern Europe, or something like that, effectively GONE.

Note that Apple made promises for a white iPhone that was supposed to be released shortly after the iPhone 4 launch...can you really believe EVERYTHING that Apple tries to claim? Hype, advertising, and smart marketing tricks...Apple has talent there, but they are fighting a stagnation in product design while the competition shows more innovation that IS taking a lot of the spotlight these days.

So, again, if you have people currently on AT&T who go to Verizon, they are not increasing the number of iPhone users if they can't or don't sell their old phone to someone who doesn't have an iPhone already.


"We’re Apple. We don’t wear suits. We don’t even own suits." -- Apple CEO Steve Jobs














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