By David Averbach on Thu, 07/22/2010
According to Cult of Mac, T-Mobile is very close to finalizing a deal with Apple that would allow them to sell the iPhone starting this fall. The article quotes a "highly placed source" inside T-Mobile who claims that talks between the two companies are in the advanced stages and says there is an 80 percent chance that T-Mobile will start selling the iPhone 4 in the 3rd Quarter of this year.
One important question that remains to be answered is whether the iPhone is compatible with the T-Mobile's 3g network.T-Mobile operates on a non-standard 1700/2100 MHz band, whereas AT&T uses the standard 1900MHz for 3G. It is unknown whether the iPhone 4 is compatible with 1700 MHz.
There has been a lot of speculation recently on whether Apple will chose to sell the iPhone through another company. This speculation is largely fueled by the fact that many analysts believe the exclusive contract between Apple and AT&T is coming to an end. There has also been speculation that Verizon would start carrying the iPhone as early as next year. In the last Friday's press conference Steve Jobs casually mentioned that Apple has a Verizon tower on their campus in Cupertino, CA
It should be noted that Cult of Mac does not have the best track record with stories like this. Personally, I think this story makes a lot of sense though. It's no secret that Apple's relationship with AT&T is strained, and T-Mobile has every incentive in the world to leak this story. Verizon has been marketing Google Android Phones pretty heavily and even ran some adds recently making fun of the iPhone 4's reception problems. Meanwhile, T-Mobile's parent company Deustche Telekom is already selling the iPhone in Europe.
What do you think? Will Apple break from their exclusive contract with AT&T? Will they go to Verizon or T-Mobile? Would you care? Personally, I took the plunge and got the iPhone 4 a couple weeks ago (I love it by the way, and haven't had much reception problems at all) but I feel a little uneasy about being married to AT&T for the next couple of years. I've heard excellent things about T-Mobile's customer service and had I known, I may have considered waiting until the fall.