updated 02:10 pm EDT, Tue June 10, 2008
Verizon on iPhone 3G Plan
Apple's decision to allow subsidized prices for the iPhone 3G is an admission that it needs to follow the traditional cellphone provider model, Verizon's chief operating officer Denny Strigl claimed at the second day of the Deutsche Bank Conference. The executive downplays the impact of the new cellphone on his own company and contends that Apple and AT&T are simply learning to accept a conventional practice that discounts the phone's up-front price rather than insist on splitting monthly phone revenues.
"I don't see anything that changes the game for Apple," Strigl says. "They changed their own game; I'm surprised it took this long."
Verizon is known to have been one of Apple's first potential customers for the iPhone during its early development phase but is believed to have refused to accept revenue sharing terms. Since then, the company has placed a strong emphasis on touchscreen phones such as the LG Voyager and Samsung Glyde and has tried counter-campaigns such as advertising its normal business hours as a special event during the iPhone's launch last year.
Strigl also expresses little worry about Sprint's WiMAX-based Xohm wireless service, saying that it's still a future network and that Verizon will only have to change its approach if Xohm proves successful. Verizon's fourth-generation Long Term Evolution service arrives in 2010 and should outperform WiMax with a peak speed of 100Mbps versus the 10Mbps of WiMAX.