By Paul Miller posted Jan 11th 2011 11:06AM
We’ve waited and waited, and now Apple and Verizon have made a million dreams come true: the iPhone is coming to Big Red. After talking up his new LTE network a bit, Verizon CEO Lowell McAdam confirmed a CDMA (non-LTE) version of the iPhone 4 is coming to Verizon Wireless next month. Talks started way back in 2008, and the phone has been in testing for a year — it sounds like they wanted to get this one right. Current Verizon customers will be able to pre-order on Feburary 3rd for the standard $200 price for the 16GB model on a two year agreement, $300 for the 32GB version — everyone else can order on February 10th (see it compared with AT&T’s iPhone 4). Just to clarify and put any wild rumors to bed, the phone is Verizon 3G (EV-DO) only, no 4G data or GSM roaming. It’s not a world phone or an AT&T + Verizon phone, it’s just a Verizon phone.
Outside of Verizon connectivity, the phone is basically unchanged, although Verizon’s CDMA network doesn’t support simultaneous voice and data as with the GSM version. It does have the new antenna design we were hearing about last week, but that’s just because CMDA requires a different configuration of antennas. (Apple says they didn’t go LTE just yet because first-gen chipsets would force unwanted design decisions, and customers want a Verizon device now.) That slight modification also equates to a slight bump in where the volume buttons and mute switch — a new case might be required. Software-wise the big innovation is five user WiFi hotspot functionality, something that’s standard on Android phones, while Apple has kept the iPhone only able to tether directly to one computer.
Check out our full hands-on with the Verizon iPhone right here, and stay tuned — we’ve got lots more coming up.