Apple and Verizon have reportedly been engaged in high-level talks to bring the iPhone onto the network as early as next year when Apple's exclusivity deal with AT&T expires.

Citing people familiar with the situation, USA Today says that the two companies began talks before CEO Steve Jobs went on medical leave in January.

If the deal is materialized between the two companies, the device would mark the first time an iPhone is available on a CDMA wireless network -- as the phone's current network provider, AT&T, is on GSM.

Meanwhile, Apple has not hinted at the possibility of shifting networks. In a recent quarterly earnings conference call, the company even said that it is happy with AT&T.

However, AT&T does not seem it will lose the exclusive partnership with Apple without a fight. AT&T CEO Randall Stephenson said last week that his company is ready to renew the profitable deal it has with the iPhone maker.

AT&T has exclusive U.S. distribution rights to the iPhone that expires in 2010, though Verizon's co-owner, Vodaphone, already sells the iPhone in Europe.

Earlier on Monday, Verizon posted first quarter revenues of $26.6 billion, ahead of the Street at $26.3 billion, and up 3.3 percent from a year ago on a pro forma basis, adjusted to reflect the acquisition of Alltel.

Operating margins rose to 28.2 percent from 27.9 percent on revenue growth of 30 percent. Average monthly revenue per user, a key metric for wireless companies, slid 0.3 percent.