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4G LTE Verizon iPhone 4 rumored to debut immediately after Christmas

Update: For all of you searching for 'Verizon iPhone,' it seems clear now that MDN did not have the straight dope regarding an iPhone introduction for Verizon right after Christmas 2010. On the plus side, however, BusinessWeek is citing "someone familiar with Apple's plans who is not able to discuss them publicly" (read: a valued and trustworthy source) saying that the Verizon iPhone introduction will be scheduled sometime after CES in early January. That could be as soon as January 10... but chances are it won't be quite that soon. BW says "maybe by Valentine's Day," which would be quite a love letter to Apple's current exclusive domestic carrier AT&T.

Okay everyone, take this for what it is right now: a big rumor. That being said MacDailyNews says this information is from "a sole source that we believe to be credible." The rumor? The iPhone 4 is going to drop on the Verizon network right "after Christmas." Oh, and it will be a 4G LTE iPhone 4.

Here's what MacDailyNews' source says they know:

  • The "after Christmas" unveiling of the Verizon iPhone was AT&T's final demand, so they could squeeze as many Christmas iPhone sales in as possible
  • Verizon managers had training on the 4G iPhones last week and had functioning 4G iPhones in their hands
  • The Verizon 4G iPhone 4 will be available the day it's announced
  • The Verizon iPhone is already shipping to Verizon warehouses
  • The Verizon iPhone is NOT being shipped to third-party resellers in order to control product leaks (good job)
  • Verizon agreed to take complete responsibility for the security of the 4G iPhone before it's released to the public
  • The Verizon iPhone will be marketed as the only "LTE iPhone"
  • Since LTE is not widespread, Verizon will have multi-band chip backward compatibility with regular CDMA chips

Other notes include that the next major (5th generation) version of the iPhone was originally planned to be LTE-only. However, "nobody thinks that either Verizon or AT&T can get to critical mass to offer an LTE-only version" by its debut in the summer, which Steve Jobs is upset about; Apple is therefore "helping" U.S. carriers to build out LTE networks faster than they could alone. It should be noted that this rumored LTE iPhone 4 will presumably not be the 5th generation iPhone, but that a 5th generation iPhone will still likely debut in summer 2011.

Without further confirmation, it's anyone's guess if this rumor is true. But everyone knows it's only a matter of time before the iPhone lands on Verizon's network. And there has been that rush of iPhone sales to get people to sign up for two-year contracts with AT&T before Christmas...

We'll update any information we hear on this as soon as it becomes available.

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