Tech Savvy: Verizon iPhone still has kinks to fix

For the past year, you may have heard rumors about the iPhone coming to Verizon. This, my friends, is finally happening. That’s right — starting on Feb. 10, Verizon will also own rights to the iPhone (as well as the iPhone 5 when it debuts this summer) and be able to sell it to Verizon customers. There has been a lot said about the release of the iPhone to Verizon. While many people are ready to be iPhone users, there are a few facts that they should know before buying.

The price of the phone will be $199 for a 16GB iPhone and $299 for a 32GB one, with a two-year contract according to Apple’s website. Current Verizon contract holders were able to start pre-ordering either phone on Feb. 3. In a bid to attract early switchers, Verizon is allowing iPhone 4 buyers to lock into the carrier’s $30 unlimited data plan — a significant gift, considering how much more data smart-phone users will likely gobble up two years from now.

The biggest news to come out of this announcement is the addition of Verizon’s HotSync service with the phone. This means that the iPhone can be a mobile hotspot for up to five different electronic and digital devices, a feature that AT&T has never offered. Through the hotspot, other wireless electronics like laptops or smartphones can go on the Internet without actually having its own connection.  This seems like a great change to an already powerful smartphone.

Dropped calls on AT&T’s network have made many consumers hesitant about purchasing an iPhone. Because of AT&T’s large number of iPhone users, there apparently isn’t enough airwave space to handle all of the calls. This doesn’t make sense considering the fact that the iPhone has been out for a few years already. Verizon made sure to highlight that its network has been adjusted to handle an influx of iPhone customers. After all, the customers deserve good service from their provider.

While the HotSync feature is extravagant, there’s a big negative for “would-be” Verizon iPhone owners. The CDMA technology inside the phone that makes it compatible with Verizon’s network also means that data and calls can’t happen on the phone at the same time. Basically, you cannot check your e-mail and talk on the phone simultaneously. So, the whole point of all of the iPhone commercials that we currently see on television and hear on the radio is no longer relevant.

Even with the problem with the CDMA technology, I think that the Verizon iPhone is a good idea. While I wouldn’t be able to do multiple things on the iPhone all at once, I would still buy and recommend it to everyone I know. The iPhone is something that Verizon users have been awaiting for as long as I can remember and is too good to ignore.

With all of this information, Verizon customers have something to consider. Should they buy it on Feb. 10 or just wait a few months and read the reviews of those who do make the switch to a Verizon iPhone?  I know that there are a few iPhone enthusiasts who will be out at midnight to buy their new devices, but hopefully they have weighed the pros and cons before jumping into such a big decision.

– Amanda Landisi

Freshman journalism major

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