Verizon iPhone 4 is on/off/on/off... or 5 for 4G/LTE?

By Richi Jennings. September 24, 2010.

iPhone 4 (Apple)
Well, Verizon Wireless CEO, Ivan Seidenberg, certainly surprised and/or horrified a few people yesterday. The big question remains: what did he actually say? Either he poured cold water on rumors of an impending Verizon CDMA iPhone 4, or he hinted at an iPhone 5 for his shiny new 4G LTE network. And did he at least hint at a release date? Perhaps; in IT Blogwatch, bloggers read between the obfuscated lines.

Your humble blogwatcher curated these bloggy bits for your entertainment. Not to mention Munich meetings...

(VZ) (VOD) (T) (AAPL)

Jennifer Valentino-DeVries has cold comfort for Verizon iPhone fans:

The telecom company’s CEO, Ivan Seidenberg, offered nothing to soothe your nerves. ... On Thursday, [he] appeared to imply that a Verizon iPhone could be much further in the future. ... It’s not clear whether he meant Verizon won’t get an iPhone until the phone runs on 4G ... [or] that 4G will spur Apple to work more closely with Verizon.


At this point, it’s in Apple’s best interests to offer the iPhone on networks other than AT&T. ... The lack of a Verizon iPhone has created a huge opportunity for phones running on Google’s Android operating system.

  And Jonny Evans is glad he doesn't live in the U.S.:

One-third of AT&T's iPhone customers would switch to Verizon ... if they weren't so locked-in to lengthy contracts. ... Seidenberg is expected to speak at CES in 2011. Many anticipate this will see the announcement of an iPhone for Verizon.


Apple and Verizon ... owe customers a little transparency. We all understand mobile is a cut throat business, but give people a break. ...  Is the iPhone coming to Verizon, and when?

So Chris Smith tries to interpret:

So let me get this straight, is Seidenberg saying that Apple doesn’t want to make a CDMA iPhone? ... Or that Apple doesn’t want to “get with the program” and let Verizon have its way ... just like it does with any other smartphone out there?

But Mont Cessna flies in: [You did that gag yesterday -Ed.]

But what about all the analysts saying Apple is ... producing millions of CDMA compatible iPhone units right now for ... January 2011 launch? ... There is a CDMA network in China. Certainly China would love some iPhone 4 goodness on more carriers.


Seidenberg’s words might be true, or they could just be him trying to downplay a possible deal in case it ultimately falls apart. ... Of course, the rumors for a Verizon iPhone have been going on since 2007, so don’t hold your breath.

Here's Darrell Etherington, with his take:

Seidenberg mostly emphasized the LTE network itself, and LTE-based devices, like Android phones. ... It seems like both a bit of a shot at Apple, and an attempt to distance the company from the rumors, out of apparent fear that when the rumors prove untrue, Verizon stock will suffer


Its 4G network [is expected to] cover 90 percent of the U.S. by 2012. ... [Verizon is] staking its future on devices that work with [LTE]. ... Apple tends to be a late adopter of new wireless tech, only updating when the infrastructure is already in place. ... Don’t expect Cupertino to jump through any hoops to beat other manufacturers to the LTE party.

Meanwhile, Chris Foresman is just about to lose his mind (honey, honey, yeah):

We've heard through the grapevine that an LTE/CDMA iPhone has been in testing on Verizon's network in the Boston area. ... The rumored January launch was contingent on Verizon ... launching its LTE network in 30 major markets by year's end. If Verizon isn't on track to meet that goal ... Apple [may have] changed its mind.


A CDMA-compatible iPhone could launch on other networks, including Sprint in the US, and China Mobile and SK Telecom in Asia.

And Finally...

It's amazing how many business meetings there are in Munich in late September

Don't miss out on IT Blogwatch:

Richi Jennings, your humble blogwatcher
  Richi Jennings is an independent analyst/consultant, specializing in blogging, email, and security. A cross-functional IT geek since 1985, you can follow him as @richi on Twitter, pretend to be richij's friend on Facebook, or just use good old email:

You can also read Richi's full profile and disclosure of his industry affiliations.

Copyright © 2010 IDG Communications, Inc.

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