Or is it? This morning as anticipated for the past 3 years, Verizon (USA) announced the availability of the iPhone 4 on their network. They will begin pre-ordering for existing Verizon customers on February 3rd and the phones are available for pickup on February 10th.

There are only three differences between the iPhone 4 (CDMA) announced by Verizon (a mobile carrier in the US) and the previous model of iPhone 4 (GSM)

  • Supports CDMA EV-DO Rev. A (800, 1900 MHz).
  • Mobile hotspot capability like the MiFi.
  • A change in the slit at the top of the GSM iPhone 4 has been move to a slits on the left side.

These features ("changes") really have no benefits to anyone living outside of the USA and non-subscribers to Verizon (US). CDMA phones are locked to the carrier they are designed for unless they use a R-UIM card inside.

As for the mobile hotspot capability, it is questionable whether this will be a practical advantage. Since Verizon CDMA does not allow simultaneous data and voice access. So if the iPhone is in mobile hotspot mode, it will not be able to take or make a voice call over the Verizon network without dropping the mobile hotspot for all connected devices. Unless this voice call is made through one of the IP based voice services (ie. Skype, etc.). The rumor is that the mobile hotspot function may become a built in feature for all iPhones with the pending iOS 4.3. This feature will work much better on a GSM network, since simultaneous voice and data is capable on GSM networks, but the feature will require mobile carriers to release it to iPhone users.

The change in the top slit position means that the Hold button has shifted down from position on the GSM version of the iPhone 4, meaning most existing cases for the iPhone 4 (GSM) will not fit the iPhone 4 (CDMA).

So if you live in the US, is an unhappy iPhone user with AT&T service and wants to change to the Verizon network, or if you had resisted in purchasing an iPhone because you do not like AT&T, you may want to wait another six months. This is because there will most likely be an iPhone 5 in June 2011 and it is very likely will be available for both Verizon and AT&T networks. It will also very likely will be a LTE capable iPhone.

For the former group there is really no benefits in switching to Verizon unless you have a really bad receptions on the AT&T network, but should still wait to find out if iPhone 4 users on the Verizon network in your area get better reception.

As for the latter group, since you had waited over 4 years for an iPhone you can wait another six month to see what the iPhone 5 will bring and whether the Verizon network will suffer the same congestions as AT&T.

So will this be the first and only CDMA version of the iPhone? Will Apple create CDMA versions of the iPhone for other carriers? Verizon is currently the larges CDMA EV-DO Rev A provider, but China mobile may take the title from Verizon as the largest CDMA EV-DO Rev B provider, when Verizon ramps up its own LTE deployment to cover all its existing coverage areas in the US.

Just received an email from Apple Marketing to let me know that the iPad WiFi+3G version is now available for order at the Apple Store US and Apple retail stores in the US. In the same email, Apple reminds its readers that there is an "iPad order limit: two per customer. While supplies last." I wonder if this means the entire iPad line or two per model? From the reports throughout the Internet there may indeed be a 5 units "life time" limit per person.

Going to the Apple Store US indicates that the estimate ship date for the iPad WiFi+3G is May 7th, which is the previous rumored date of availability.

Given the track record for the rumor of the May 7th date, it is also fairly certain that the "initial" international availability of the iPad is most likely the rumored May 22nd date (a Saturday). These dates are very different from Apple's normal product release dates of Tuesday. The iPad (WiFi version) was first made available on a Saturday. Now the WiFi+3G version is being sold on a Friday (April 30th), so having a May 22nd release date for the international version of the iPad is not unlikely.

Given the rumored announcement of the 4th generation iPhone and iPhone OS 4.0 will be most likely during the keynote of WWDC 2010 on June 7th (a Monday).


It appears that United States capitalism is different from typical capitalism. If your business fails and you are large enough of a company, you can ask the [US] government for money to bail you out. Rather than doing what most other companies in a capitalistic economy will have to do, which is to be original and reorganize the business so it becomes profitable.

Having already set a precedent of bailing out AIG and CitiBank, next week the US government will decide on a bailout package of about USD15B to USD17B, for the three major US auto manufactures: GM, Chrysler and Ford. This is short of what the three companies were asking for, USD34B, to keep them afloat.

The more shocking fact of this story is that the approximate USD17B will only last the three companies until March 2009.

I think for USD17B or USD34B that the auto makers are asking for, the government can use this money to retrain the autoworkers for the future work force. It is not the question of whether United States should have an auto industry, but whether they should maintain status quo.

Do you agree with the US government's decisions? Please share your comments here.