Wednesday, December 29, 2010 at 11:33 PM | Posted by LOOPRumors Staff
Peter Burrows of Bloomberg Businessweek reports that “very soon,” potential iPhone users weary of AT&T’s well know coverage shortfalls could have the option of carrying Apple’s cutting edge smartphone on the Verizon network.
While in Boston, most iPhone users have reported minimal service interruptions on the AT&T network, customers in areas with more densely concentrated iPhone usage like San Francisco and New York regularly experience dropped calls.
AT&T was ranked worst in customer satisfaction by a Consumer Reports survey in early December, 2010.
“I’m sure some AT&T customers are sufficiently frustrated to switch, but the vast majority are at least happy enough,” says Forrester Research of Cambridge, Massachusetts analyst Charles S. Golvin.
“Very soon, maybe by Valentine’s Day, Apple (AAPL) will likely host one of its splashy product introductions to announce a new version of the iPhone that works on Verizon’s (VZ) network,” writes Burrows.
“Customers are expected to stampede to the new pairing, leaving AT&T (T), until now the exclusive U.S. distributor of the iPhone, with an enormous problem.”
Verizon’s wireless network has a much stronger history of reliability than AT&T and also operates the most comprehensive mobile telecommunications network in the United States.
“Apple’s introduction of an iPhone for use on Verizon’s network will come sometime after the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas in early January, according to a person familiar with Apple’s plans who is not authorized to discuss them publicly,” writes Burrows.
“Estimates from industry analysts of the resulting number of defections to Verizon from AT&T range from 1 million to 6 million. John Hodulik, an analyst at UBS Securities (UBS), comes in somewhere in the middle. He predicts that AT&T will sell 8.8 million iPhones in 2011, down from 15.6 million in 2010. Of the 13.3 million Hodulik expects Verizon to sell in 2011, about 2.3 million will be to AT&T refugees, he predicts. An additional 10 million will be current Verizon subscribers who upgrade from other devices, and the rest will come from other carriers.”