John Paczkowski

Recent Posts by John Paczkowski

Apple, Verizon and the iPhone LiTE

jobs_canyouhearmenow-250x205jpgOK. So maybe there’s something to these Apple/Verizon rumors after all. Shadowy “people familiar with the matter” tell BusinessWeek the two companies are discussing a distribution deal that would see two new devices added to Verizon’s mobile devices lineup: the first, a sort of “iPhone lite” handset, the second a high-definition media tablet. Apple (AAPL) is said to have prototypes of each and has been talking them up to Verizon (VZ) for the better part of six months.

A couple thoughts: Odd, isn’t it, that we’ve seen two stories on an Apple/Verizon deal in as many days in two major news publications? They are presumably well-sourced and bullet-proof. Could be that “people familiar with the matter” are Apple execs simply using the media to put the screws to AT&T (T) in advance of the two companies’ iPhone contract renewal negotiations.

Or is it something else?

Perhaps these pieces are the first signs of the Apple’s cunning PR machine ramping up for some big announcements this summer. An Apple tablet/e-book reader is likely different enough from an iPhone that it wouldn’t interfere with AT&T’s exclusive deal on the device. And what of that “iPhone light” mentioned in the BusinessWeek story? Could it perhaps be an iPhone LTE? Or rather iPhone LiTE? A new device designed for the LTE (long term evolution) standard Verizon will begin supporting widely right around the time AT&T’s exclusive iPhone deal expires?

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I think the NSA has a job to do and we need the NSA. But as (physicist) Robert Oppenheimer said, “When you see something that is technically sweet, you go ahead and do it and argue about what to do about it only after you’ve had your technical success. That is the way it was with the atomic bomb.”

— Phil Zimmerman, PGP inventor and Silent Circle co-founder, in an interview with Om Malik