An iPhone on Sprint Make Perfect Sense for Apple
Stories are recurring yet again that Sprint will indeed be selling the next iPhone alongside Verizon and AT&T when it launches in the fall. Sprint’s stock rating recently raised from “sell” (as in, “get rid of Sprint stock now, writing is on the wall”) to “neutral,” fueling speculation that this is due to a significant phone release on the horizon for the carrier.
Expanding the availability of iPhone to Sprint really fits in with Apple’s perceived goals over ownership and market control of its products. If iPhone is on every major carrier, Apple will have even more power over carriers than before. They would be able to create stricter rulers and have more of a say in every carrier’s offerings since none would want to lose what could be their most popular smartphone. Losing the hotly-desired phone would make a significant number of customers sway towards other carriers for it, thus compliance with its manufacturer is necessary.
Apple would have totalitarian control, a control that could practically be considered a monopoly. They have always been uninfluenced by direct requests from others, but there would be no reason for them to have to even follow a carrier’s business model. Actually, it would be totally plausible for Apple to want specific iPhone plans created separate from typical smartphone plans to make the device more tempting than an Android device or BlackBerry, or for more unique reasons as new services are created. Apple could be as ruthless as they want since there will always be at least one carrier sticking around for the iPhone and the tens of millions of customers that come with it.
The move is entirely possible without hardware modifications. When iPhone 4 was released on Verizon it marked the beginning of the platform on a CDMA network. CDMA happens to be the type of network that both Verizon and Sprint utilize, so as long as iPhone continues its reign on Verizon, there is no reason technologically it could not simply be brought to Sprint.
For Apple to have full market control of the iPhone, all of the major carriers would have to be selling it. There could not be a better time as the company prepares for its first phone to simultaneously launch on multiple carriers in the United States. It is also a win-win for everybody but AT&T and Verizon, so there is no reason why Apple should not expand its potential customer base and as an effect its smartphone market dominance.