Daring Fireball has revealed that the CDMA iPhone 4 is codenamed N92 and is entering the engineering verification (EVT) stage, one step before the design verification test (DVT) stage, which is right before manufacturing -- and right on time for a possible January 2011 launch.
The device itself is supposed to be identical to the current GSM iPhone 4 (codenamed N90) with the exception of the CDMA radio. While Verizon is the logical and persistent rumored carrier for the device, Sprint is also a possibility. Although not identical to US CDMA (don't get us started on CDMA2000 vs WCDMA vs whateverCDMAwhatever) China and Korea, among others, are also possibilities.
But again, the smart money -- the millions and millions of units sold smart money -- is on Verizon.
Daring Fireball's John Gruber points out why:
The key bit: “At the critical juncture […], when they should have gone for market share, they went for profits.” I think this encapsulates Jobs’s philosophy since taking over Apple in 1997. Take the high end of the market first, establish a brand and presence, then steadily start to expand.
If they’re at that juncture with the iPhone now, expansion means CDMA. And in the U.S., it means Verizon.
He thinks there will be lineups. We do as well. What do you think?