iPhone on Verizon Is 'Exclusively in Apple's Court' - Verizon CEO

Includes: AAPL, T, VZ
by: Mick Weinstein

On today's earnings conference call, Verizon (NYSE:VZ) CEO Ivan Seidenberg commented on the possibility of offering Apple's (NASDAQ:AAPL) iPhone on his network:

in terms of the iPhone, there's nothing really different about this... this is a decision that's exclusively in Apple's court. We obviously would be interested at any point in the future they thought it would make sense for them to have us as a partner. And so we will leave it with them on that score.

I have no further thoughts about why they may have done whatever they did. What they've done has been successful so we have to sit back and give them credit for that. But in the future, what we've done is what John [Killian, Verizon CFO] said earlier, we've expanded our BlackBerry base, we've expanded our base of other devices. We now have the Droid coming out. We have an updated Storm coming out. We have application stores coming out. So I think our view is to broaden the base of choice for customers and hopefully along the way Apple, as well as others, will decide to jump on the bandwagon.

Of course, all that handset choice won't actually make Verizon a more attractive partner for Apple - a more robust wireless network and ongoing pricing leverage against AT&T will.

Gearlog speculates that Apple is waiting for Verizon's LTE network rollout, which means 2011 may the earliest Seidenberg can stop answering this question on each quarterly call.