After months of rumors, Verizon subscribers will finally get the iPhone, ending four years of the iPhone being available only on AT&T's network.
Verizon announced that it would offer the iconic device on its network today. It will start at $199 for the 16 GB model and $299 for the 32 GB with a two-year contract, and will be available Feb. 10. Reports that it would do so had already surfaced after Verizon's presentation at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas last week.
Verizon Chief Operating Officer Lowell McAdam went on stage at an event in New York. If the press writes something long enough and hard enough it becomes true, he said. He said Verizon started speaking to Apple in 2008. At the time they spoke of bringing the iPhone to the CDMA network and much of the lag was for design and testing.
The iPhone - it is still an iPhone 4 -- will be the first that works on the CDMA network, as opposed to AT&Ts GSM. Since the iPhone was introduced in 2007, it has been locked to the AT&T network, at least in the U.S. In other regions, notably in Europe, iPhones can be bought directly from Apple and unlocked from a specific network, though the price is higher.
McAdam said broadband and video is driving growth across the wireless industry, and that people want to carry all their digital content on any device at any time. He also said the company has made a huge investment in its network, and claimed Verizon's is the most reliable 3G network.
Verizon had made intimations that it would be the next carrier for the iPhone for about a year. While it wouldn't reveal that it would add the iPhone to its lineup at the CES, it did mention that it had vastly improved its network, and that the 4G/LTE network it had in a number of markets could achieve megabit download speeds.
This is especially important when rolling out the iPhone. AT&T ran into problems in September 2009 when several million iPhone users started using data-heavy apps.
The iPhone 4 ran into antenna problems earlier this year. Asked if there were any changes to it, Apple COO Tim Cook said the phone was optimized for the CDMA network, though he said nothing specific about the antenna itself.