Talking tech since 2003

On January 11th, Verizon announced that the iPhone will finally be coming to their network starting on February 10th. For many, this announcement excited many people who have been waiting for a Verizon iPhone since the beginning. However, with this announcement, many people have been saying AT&T will see a mass exodus of customers which could potentially hurt them financially.  While I am not fond of AT&T, I think this situation is being blown out of proportion and here’s why:

Size: AT&T is one of the largest cellular companies in the US. Not only that, but they also provide DSL, fiber and home phone services. So, it would take a lot to kill off such a large provider. Just because AT&T will no longer be an exclusive iPhone carrier doesn’t mean other popular phones won’t be on the network. For instance, Android phones are starting to appear on the network. Along with that, AT&T still has a decent relationship with RIM’s Blackberry and Microsoft’s Windows Phone 7.

Customers: Most of the customers that I have talked too are with AT&T are very loyal. Also, many major corporations rely on AT&T for either their Internet or phone related services. Most geeks, like myself, might be into getting the latest and greatest phones on various networks, but most people are probably the exact opposite. The average customer will probably not want to get new phones on various carriers every month. Most customers will just get an upgrade every 2 years or when their phone breaks.

Service: AT&T is not known for having good customer or cellular service, but they do have an advantage over Verizon and some other carriers when it comes to roaming. AT&T is run on a GSM-style network which allows for people to be in a call and use data at the same time. Someone can also easily use an AT&T phone when going out the country.  AT&T also offers rollover minutes which is not offered by Verizon.  It’s also worth mentioning that if there are a chunk of customers who leave AT&T for Verizon, it could benefit remaining AT&T customers due to less congestion on the network.  And lastly, Verizon claims their network will be able to handle the iPhone, but the real test will come once it’s available and in millions of customers hands.

iPhone Differences: This is not as big a point as the previous 3 and isn’t much of a long-term effect, but with having to buy a completely new iPhone that works with Verizon’s CDMA network will really hold people back from initially buying the phone. People will probably wait a year or two when the releases of the phones on both networks are more synchronized. Not only that, but most people might wait until there is an LTE-based Verizon iPhone.

These are just a few reasons that I have picked up over the past week or so why the Verizon iPhone won’t kill AT&T. if you have any more reasons, please feel free to comment below.


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