Verizon iPhone: What you'll gain and what you'll give up

Verizon rumors have come to a boil over the past few weeks.  Not only are we hearing Verizon rumors from reputable sources like the Wall Street Journal and the New York Times, we've heard from Verizon on the fact that they're trying to find a way to integrate simultaneous voice and data into their network.  Some analysts may say this is to prepare for the launch of an iPhone on Verizon.

Whether or not you'd like to leave AT&T, we've got to face the fact that Verizon has its down sides too (aside from Apple and Verizon battling out their obsessive needs for control). One of those being that pesky simultaneous voice and data issue. 

Sprint and Verizon both use a technology referred to as CDMA with the accompanying EVDO rev A data, while AT&T and T-Mobile use a technology referred to as GSM with EDGE and now HSPA for data.  While CDMA may have better voice quality, none of the carriers have (yet) rolled out EVDO rev B which supports simultaneous voice and data, or committed to an EVDO rev A workaround to enable it with the current technology. They're all moving to LTE anyway, so it simply may not have been a priority.

What does this mean for the end user?  It means you can't update your Facebook status, check your e-mail, or look something up on the web while on a phone call.  Verizon has tried to downplay this in the past by saying simultaneous voice and data isn't all that important.  Many business users may disagree.  There's been numerous times I've went to look something up for a client while on the phone.  Having to hang up with them in order to do that would become highly annoying for many business users who have become accustomed to being able to have that functionality.

Now it appears Verizon is willing to do something about it.  No exact details have been given except for the fact that they are working on a solution that would offer simultaneous voice and data on their existing network.  No firm date has been thrown out except that it should be available as of early next year.

One of things holding me back from Verizon is the fact that I can't browse and talk. CDMA is also a technology that isn't supported worldwide.  I like knowing that if I choose to unlock my phone or buy an unlocked version, I can pop a foreign SIM in my phone and know it'll work in almost every country since GSM has become a worldwide standard.  If Verizon makes the iPhone a world phone like they have with some Blackberries, I'd be more apt to set that concern aside.

Are any of these obstacles a big deal to you guys? Would Verizon solving these problems make you more apt to jump from the Death Star to Big Red? Let us know in the comments!

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Allyson Kazmucha

Senior editor for iMore. I can take apart an iPhone in less than 6 minutes. I also like coffee and Harry Potter more than anyone really should.

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