More rumors are making the rounds that Apple (s aapl) will soon be breaking up the sweetheart deal that has held until now with AT&T (s t) and do some seriously flagrant cheating with rival Verizon Wireless (s vz). Sources for the information are cited as “Apple deepthroats” by one outlet, which, while suitably mysterious sounding, doesn’t exactly inspire confidence in the accuracy of the information. That said, there are plenty of other reasons to suspect that this deal might be very real, not the least of which are the amazing gobs of cash Apple stands to rake in by tapping other providers.
There’s also the corroborating evidence that Apple has been looking specifically for EVDO-CDMA engineers, which is exactly the standard Verizon uses for its wireless network. This upcoming June it will also be exactly two years since the iPhone’s original release, which some said at the product’s launch was the term of the exclusivity deal between Apple and AT&T. Were Apple to announce Verizon availability alongside a new iPhone product launch in June, they would stand to sell a lot more handsets than if they stuck with AT&T, where many customers locked into long-term contracts might be unwilling to upgrade just yet.
If Apple invests in developing a CDMA version of the iPhone, they don’t only stand to gain in the U.S. market, either. International carriers like Bell and Telus in Canada also use the CDMA standard, and would jump at the chance to offer an iPhone since it would allow them to better compete with Rogers (and their subsidiary, Fido), which has seen tremendous gains since adding Apple’s little miracle worker to their lineup. Apple is such a contender in the smartphone arena that the breakdown of exclusivity could even lead to more competition among service providers in terms of data plan pricing, which benefits consumers most of all.