Verizon: Never in the running for original iPhone, called Apple later
The Verizon iPhone was a long time coming and Verizon CEO Ivan Seidenberg told BusinessWeek some of the reasons why, including dispelling the myth that Verizon was offered the original iPhone before AT&T.
Apple decided that it wanted one carrier in every major market. So Apple and AT&T consummated a deal three years ago. And because Apple was more focused on a single technology—the GSM technology—they chose AT&T. We had good discussions with them, but it was clear to us that they weren't looking to make a device for both sets of technologies.
So how did Apple and Verizon finally end up getting together? Verizon called Apple:
I did call up Steve and go visit him. Lowell McAdam [Verizon Wireless president and COO] called up [Apple COO] Tim Cook and went to visit him. So it was not just a one-person thing. We consciously reached out to them more than once. This was the view that we had that...eventually their interests would align with ours.
And yes, Seidenberg is "fine" with not having a Verizon logo on the iPhone. (He watches his words carefully there and for some reason brings BlackBerry and Droid into the answer?). They don't regret going CDMA over GSM, saying AT&T beat them because Apple picked AT&T for the iPhone initially, but Seidenberg remains confident Verizon won't face the same network problems AT&T has carrying massive iPhone data traffic. However, he's "going to let the performance speak for itself."
The whole interview is a great read. Check it out via the link below and let us know what you think. Was Verizon wise to wait for iPhone until now or should they have done more to get it earlier?