AT&T Bashes Verizon's CDMA Network
This is classic FUD in the works. Larry Solomon, Senior Vice President of Corporate Communications for AT&T, sent the following statement to Business Insider: "The iPhone is built for speed, but that's not what you get with a CDMA phone. I'm not sure iPhone users are ready for life in the slow lane."
First, Solomon has practically confirmed that there will be a Verizon iPhone announced on Tuesday, January 11. Otherwise, why bother taking a shot at its competitor's network?
Second, it may be true that I've seen faster peak data speeds with AT&T's HSPA+ network when compared to Verizon's EVDO Rev. A network, but Verizon's network actually works.
I carried two phones to Las Vegas for the Consumer Electronics Show last week. My iPhone on AT&T's network was practically useless. Voice calls and text messages barely worked at all, let alone any sort of reliable data service. Speed doesn't matter when you can't connect in the first place. Conversely, the Motorola Droid X on Verizon was a champ all week long. I had no problems getting email, making calls, sending text messages, or checking Twitter.
When I was on the road doing my job, Verizon -- and not AT&T -- delivered the service I needed. And I wasn't alone. Nearly every iPhone user I encountered during CES last week complained of shoddy AT&T service. What do you say to that, Solomon?
The Unlimited Data Advantage?
According to the Wall Street Journal, Verizon will offer the Apple iPhone with an unlimited data plan. Remember, several months ago Verizon Wireless added tiered data plans to its smartphone offering. Unlimited data is still available for $30 per month, but there are two other tiers for lesser amounts.
Earlier this year, AT&T also dropped unlimited data plans entirely. It offers a 200MB plan for $15 per month, and a 2GB plan for $25 per month. (Existing iPhone customers were allowed to keep their unlimited iPhone plans when upgrading to the iPhone 4.) For anyone who didn't already have an unlimited plan with AT&T, the option doesn't exist any more.
By offering an unlimited data plan with the iPhone, Verizon could provide some incentive for people to switch.
Apple Nixes Restocking Fee
In yet another coincidence-that-doesn't-feel-like-a-coincidence, Apple has decided to drop its 10% restocking fee starting on ..... January 11, the same day that Verizon's press conference is scheduled. The timing is highly suspicious. The restocking fee applies to products that are returned. That 10% can really hurt when you're talking about a $1500 computer.
Stay tuned on January 11 for the new from Verizon's press conference as it breaks.