Four reasons to not get the Verizon iPhone

Four reasons to not get the Verizon iPhone

Summary: We're hours away from the Verizon iPhone finally being announced. While Verizon's network is arguably superior to AT&T's, there are four main reasons why you shouldn't jump at the Verizon iPhone.

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We're hours away from the Verizon iPhone finally being announced. While Verizon's network is arguably superior to AT&T's, there are four main reasons why you shouldn't jump at the Verizon iPhone. I have detailed them below.

Lack of simultaneous voice and data

This seemingly obvious feature will not be possible on the Verizon network. As a long time iPhone user and current AT&T customer, I can tell you that while I would love to have a chance to have the coverage that Verizon offers, the ability to put a call on speaker and browse the internet or search Google maps or perform a variety of other internet-related activities, far outweighs the occasional dropped calls that I experience on AT&T. And yes, I did say "occasional". It seems that AT&T has gone a long way in fixing the dropped call issues and with my iPhone 4, I'm more apt to hang up a call by accident with my cheek than experience a dropped call due to the network.

ETF (Early Termination Fee)

Of course, my wife has already told me that she wants to go back to Verizon--she was a long time customer before I forced her to take an iPhone. However, if you're an existing AT&T customer and want to jump to Verizon, you'll have to pay the ETF (early termination fee). According to AT&T's page on the subject, that's going to run you $325, minus $10 for each full month of your Service Commitment that you completed. I haven't done the math yet, but I can tell you that it's going to cost a lot for me to move my wife and I over to Verizon, since we both have iPhone 4's. Translation: not gonna happen.

Bugs

What do you get with the first iPhone to ship designed to work on CDMA? Bugs! Are you ready to enjoy a bug or two? I'm pretty sure there will be some CDMA-specific bugs introduced. Either some bugs related to handing off between data and voice or battery drainage. Regardless, when you ship a new product it's buggy, unfortunately.

Speed

I've talked about issues with CDMA a couple of times already. I gave it its own area under Speed because I wanted to highlight that while Verizon may have a better coverage area, the speed of its data network is slower than AT&T's. The iPhone 4 zips along on AT&T's network, because of both the speed of the network, and the processor and memory on the iPhone. If you mess with that magical equation you get a sub-par experience. I have a feeling that early reports of the iPhone 4 on Verizon will be of a sub-par experience, especially in areas where AT&T has solid coverage.

We'll see what Verizon and Apple have in store for us tomorrow. Here are some of the questions I'm hoping we get answers to:

  • Will there be a new iPhone 4 design that fixes that "death grip" that Apple never really said was an iPhone-only issue?
  • Will it get the same iOS release?
  • Will Verizon offer unlimited data plans?
  • Will Verizon offer simultaneous data and voice, due to a rumored CDMA network upgrade?
  • Will the iPhone 4 even be announced?

Tomorrow all of our questions will be answered, hopefully.

Topics: Hardware, iPhone, Mobility, Smartphones, AT&T, Verizon

Joel Evans

About Joel Evans

With more than 15 years of mobile, Internet and wireless experience, Joel specializes in taking existing brands and technologies into the mobile and wireless space. Joel is currently the VP of Strategy Integration for Mobiquity, an enterprise-class mobile solutions provider.

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  • RE: Four reasons to not get the Verizon iPhone

    I give you a tweet right from Steve Jobs...

    ceoSteveJobs: "iPhone 4: $299. AT&T early termination fee: $325. Finally being able to make a call on Verizon: Priceless."
    VDubin12
    • RE: Four reasons to not get the Verizon iPhone

      @VDubin12 You do realize that's a parody account, right?
      BruinDanny
  • You are a tool

    Have you used an AT&T iPhone in NYC? The talk and surf argument is really starting to annoy me. Having the ability to talk and surf at the same time and having a "faster 3G" doesn't mean jack **** when you can't even get enough reception to get a call out, let alone browse a web page.<br><br>I work in midtown and the lower west side in NYC. I don't get data service in either of my offices on AT&T! I've been to San Francisco plenty of times and AT&T there is great, but it sucks everywhere else I've been. <br><br>I have a small house in the Poconos. Guess which carrier has great data and voice reception? Verizon. Guess who has nothing? EVERYONE ELSE!<br><br>All phones have bugs, get use to it. <br><br>Your phone wont burn up in the atmosphere upon reentry after you terminate your contract. You can put your iPhone on ebay and get your money back. I've done this, it works.
    solomonshv
    • RE: Four reasons to not get the Verizon iPhone

      @solomonshv Ah, the "It doesn't work for me, therefore it doesn't work for anyone" argument. Never gets old.
      HCMarks
      • RE: Four reasons to not get the Verizon iPhone

        @HCMarks [i]Ah, the "It doesn't work for me, therefore it doesn't work for anyone" argument. Never gets old. [/i]

        Ah, the "It works for me, therefore no one has a problem" argument. Never gets old.
        Badgered
      • Thank you, Badgered

        I've lost count on how many times the same people here say there's no such thing as a problem with something because it never happens to them.
        John Zern
      • Actually its a perfectly valid argument.

        @HCMarks And one the carriers (all of them) don't want you to consider. AT&T, Verizon, and all the others can compare maps all day long but it doesn't mean jack to the individual. What individual customers want to know is "does it work in the places where I need it to work". I could care less who has the most red on the coverage map if the map is white in the place where I want to use the phone.

        Virtually all of these "mine's bigger than yours" arguments are completely meaningless.
        cornpie
      • RE: Four reasons to not get the Verizon iPhone

        What I am anxious to see is how Verizon will cope with the increased load on their system and how they'll react...the smugness of Verizon is getting a bit old
        nothingness
    • RE: Four reasons to not get the Verizon iPhone

      @solomonshv
      If so unhappy with AT&T, why even have service with them? There are many good alternatives to the iPhone in VZW line-up - especially in light of your coverage experiences listed in the post.
      Me, I'm so far pretty happy with the iPhone and for the past 17 years with AT&T's network.
      wellcraft19
  • RE: Four reasons to not get the Verizon iPhone

    Here's a reason. The antenna bug wasn't the carrier, it was the phone. A sofware patch supposedly fixed the incorrect signal level (multi-year bug) but that didn't affect the grounding out of the cell antenna to the wi-fi antenna "antenna gate'issue". It's a poorly designed phone. Port it to the Jesus network and it will still get crappy reception.
    Admin71
    • Wrong; Anandetch test iPhone 4 and found that new antenna is 7 times better

      ... comparing to ordinary one. Reception goes bad only if you grab tightly on lower left part of the phone with sweaty palms, which is not constant problem at all.
      DDERSSS
      • Not a problem at all, unless...

        @denisrs ...you have big sweaty hands perhaps? I just love the people who know what is best for me better than I know what is best for me!
        cornpie
      • RE: Four reasons to not get the Verizon iPhone

        @denisrs
        any bare palms, or fingers, or conductive objects or.....
        Got a ifrogz case and problem is gone.

        poor design; yes.
        next?
        rhonin
  • Your reasoning is a DO NOT USE VERIZON list

    It is funny that you are so anti-Apple on Verizon when you entire list can be applied to ANY smartphone (from any vendor) on the Verizon network.
    wackoae
    • Absolutely..

      @wackoae... there are a lot of iphone haters out there.. why is that?
      DRLOVE4
      • RE: Four reasons to not get the Verizon iPhone

        @DRLOVE4 Perhaps because Steve Jobs, father of I-Phone/Apple, is such a jackwagon! See the old movie, "Pirates of Silicon Valley"...hilarious.
        cidfreud
    • RE: Four reasons to not get the Verizon iPhone

      @wackoae

      Granted, but we don't get 10+ zdnet blog posts for any other smartphone on the verizon network either
      rtk
    • RE: Four reasons to not get the Verizon iPhone

      @wackoae
      Completely untrue. I have a Motorola Droid X & can look at data, surf the internet, get directions, etc. while talking on the phone. I just did it. Know what you're talking about before you post.
      mydogmandy
  • RE: Four reasons to not get the Verizon iPhone

    Here's a question I'm hoping we get answers to:

    Will the VerIphone 4 be a true 4G speeds phone?

    All the Androids are jumping into 4G why not the VerIphone 4?

    Me things for the VerIphone 4 to be at 3G speeds is a little lame compared to the 4G Androids. Hopefully for Verizon it will be 4G.

    ff

    Verizon
    One of the biggest stories from this year's CES was Verizon unveiling the first round of smartphones that will be able to access its new 4G network.
    There will be four of these: the Motorola Droid Bionic, HTC ThunderBolt, LG Revolution, and a Samsung device which will get an official name later on.
    HTC ThunderBolt from VerizonAll will have 4.3-inch screens, most of which will be WVGA (800 x 480), though the Motorola model's will have a higher resolution: qHD (960 x 540).
    The Droid Bionic is also going to have a faster processor it will use a dual-core NVIDIA Tegra 2 chip, while HTC's, LG's, and Samsung's are gong to 1 GHz processors.
    All will have an 8 megapixel camera except the LG device, and storage capacities will vary from device to device.
    ffinder-cy
    • Quick simple answers

      @ffinder-cy

      #1- The Verizon iPhone is CDMA, not LTE. That fact has being discuses to death by now.

      #2- LTE is not a true 4G technology. It does not meet the speed requirements to be called 4G.

      #3- Verizon LTE will not be truly available until 2013 or later. They will have a few test areas in 2011, but they will be small and may not be fully active for months. Also CDMA hardware is not compatible with LTE, so Verizon will have to build a new infrastructure from almost the ground up. That will take time, money and a lot of testing.
      wackoae