updated 05:40 pm EST, Wed January 6, 2010
VZ iPhone may lack world roaming
A Verizon iPhone is coming but may not have the world roaming some users would want, Northeast Securities analyst Ashok Kumar claims today. After contacting Apple's suppliers, the researcher believes Qualcomm has landed a deal to produce a CDMA iPhone but that it won't be a dual-mode phone with both CDMA and GSM and consequently can't leave North America with cellular service intact. BlackBerries like the Storm2 and Tour have such features themselves.
Kumar asserts that Apple had originally asked for a dual chip but allegedly wasn't happy with the results, instead opting for a more conventional design. It's not said what triggered the purported disappointment, though dual-network phones have often had significant if sometimes artificial limitations in their frequency support.
Whether or not GSM iPhones continue using Infineon's chips also isn't discussed.
The accuracy of the analyst's sources isn't clear and may run in the face of Qualcomm's own developments. It recently unveiled a HSPA+ and CDMA hybrid chipset that would not only supply calling but the best possible 3G data on both network types. Its feasibility as an iPhone candidate may depend on timing as it should reach shipping hardware before the end of the year, though Apple often prefers a mid-year release window for iPhones.
Apple has also previously described CDMA as a "dead" technology as it will be phased out once its carriers move completely over to LTE for their 4G networks.
Even if Apple continues to use Infineon for its GSM iPhones, however, any Qualcomm decision is likely to be a blow to the former as it has based a significant amount of its recent revenue on its deal with Apple.