Verizon's iPhone 4 Deal Hints at Longer-Term Strategic Partnership

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On 11 January 2011, Verizon Wireless announced that it will offer a CDMA EV-DO variant of Apple's iPhone 4. The announcement, attended by Verizon executives and Apple chief operating officer Tim Cook, had been widely expected for the first quarter of 2011. It came just days after the Consumer Electronics Show (CES), which saw Verizon announce 11 new devices including smartphones and tablets for use on its expanding LTE network. It also came less than a week before an announcement from Apple that CEO Steve Jobs had been granted a medical leave of absence of undetermined duration.

The device is scheduled to be in Verizon Wireless and Apple stores and online channels on 10 February 2011. Online pre-orders will be available to existing Verizon customers beginning 3 February. Verizon indicated the device would be available to independent retail agents "within a number of weeks".

Retail pricing matches that of AT&T at $199 for the 16GB model and $299 for the 32GB version, both with a two-year service contract. Two weeks after the initial announcement, Verizon revealed that its existing $30 monthly unlimited smartphone data plan would extend to the iPhone, and that its standard $20 monthly hot-spot tethering fee for 2GB of data would also apply.