Valentine’s Day may be an extra sweet holiday for some next February 14th if reports Wednesday evening from Bloomberg prove to be true.
The folks at AT&T, however, would likely have preferred to stick with the usual flowers and chocolates as the report indicates that Verizon and Apple will formally announce a mutual partnership that will end AT&T’s exclusive carrier lock on the iPhone in the US.
The announcement will come at a media event on or around Valentine’s Day 2011 and bring with it the debut of a new CDMA version of the Apple handset, making it compatible with Verizon’s network.
Like most conventional wisdom, this expectation makes a certain amount of sense. Verizon enjoys a reputation for reliability. AT&T is notorious for dropping calls, especially in densely populated places like New York and San Francisco where iPhones are most common and cell towers get overloaded.
Rumors of Verizon getting the iPhone have lingered since 2007 when the Apple handset first debuted with AT&T exclusivity intact.
But during the previous year, even AT&T has appeared to begin believing the speculation that its grip on the iPhone will soon end.
“In part by easing the cost of upgrading to Apple’s new iPhone 4,” Bloomberg reports, “it enticed 15 million of its 23 million iPhone subscribers to sign new two-year contracts.”
Despite recent reports to the contrary, Bloomberg cites sources in the know who reveal that Apple will not – as previously rumored – introduce the Verizon iPhone at the 2011 Consumer Electronics Show beginning January 6th.