Rumors about the iPhone launching on Verizon are as old as the iPhone itself. But the latest report from TechCrunch has added an additional layer of credibility to the speculation.
The website reports that Apple has placed a large order for Qualcomm CDMA chips to be deployed in a iPhone production run scheduled for December of this year.
According to the source, the CDMA-based chip would be required for a Verizon iPhone.
According to the sources TechCrunch spoke to, a December production run could imply a January 2011 launch of the new CDMA iPhones. The new units are reported to be "100% consistent" with the current iPhone 4 and could deploy a fixed internal insulator to fix the highly publicized antenna reception issue.
Do note that the report does not necessarily indicate an iPhone launch on Verizon since it is also likely for the device to launch on other CDMA networks like Sprint. Additionally, if the speculations we have heard in recent times are anything to go by, Apple may also be looking at T-Mobile as a potential iPhone carrier in the US market. We had recently reported that Apple's successful partnership with Deutsche Telekom in Europe could influence the company's decision to bring the iPhone to its US subsidiary, T-Mobile USA. It is possible for Apple to adopt its European multi-carrier strategy in the US market as well.
The strategy also makes sense considering the competition from Android in recent months. A recent report from Nielsen noted that the sale of Android smartphones outnumbered iPhone sales in the US for the first time last quarter. As we had pointed out in our earlier story, the non-availability of the iPhone on multiple carriers was a major limitation to the consumer, which helped Android in boosting up its sale volumes. Apple may thus be looking at multiple carriers in order to effectively compete against Google.
Will you be switching to another carrier or will stick with AT&T? Let us know in the comments.