Verizon iPhone? Check. Sprint and T-Mobile iPhone? Maybe.(Read article summary)
A Sprint or T-Mobile iPhone could be closer than you think.
Both might be closer than you think. As Neil Hughes of Apple Insider notes this afternoon, Apple exec Tim Cook has said that his company's deal with Verizon is "multi-year" and "non-exclusive," which effectively leaves the door open for other carriers to hop on the iPhone bandwagon, including T-Mobile and Sprint.
The details break down like this: Sprint, like Verizon, is a CDMA carrier, meaning that it would be relatively easy for Sprint to crank out its own iPhone 4, providing it could strike a deal with Apple. (And this is a big "if" – think about how long it took Verizon to get the iPhone.) A T-Mobile iPhone, on the other hand, would be a trickier proposition.
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"T-Mobile's US network relies on different frequencies in the AWS 3G spectrum, supporting the 1700MHz and 2100MHz bands, while AT&T supports 850MHz and 1900MHz," Hughes writes. "The current iPhone hardware does not support the 1700MHz frequency, meaning a modification of the hardware would be necessary." But what are mere modifications in the face of the most-hyped smartphone in the history of mankind?
A quick recap, in case you missed the big announcement: On Tuesday, Verizon confirmed that it would sell a CDMA-capable edition of the iPhone. (Until now, the iPhone belonged exclusively to AT&T, for better or for worse.) The release date is Feb. 10, but current Verizon customers can pre-order the phone as early as February 3. Price tags range from $199 for the 16GB model to $299 for 32GB – basically in line with AT&T prices.