The worst kept secret in the cell phone business was finally revealed earlier this week: Verizon is getting the iPhone.
But before you jump, we have some pros and cons of this hot new deal, and news of a big change for all Verizon Wireless cusomters: it is ending its "New Every Two" upgrade program.
The pros of a Verizon iPhone
The iPhone 4 will finally be available for Verizon Wireless customers on February 10, with pre orders starting February 3.
That's the biggest selling point there is: a chance for Verizon's nine million cell phone customers to finally get an iPhone, on the network Consumer Reports Magazine rated #1 or #2. (By contrast, Consumer Reports rated AT&T last).
However, Verizon's phone will run on its older 3G network for now, not its new 4G network. Verizon says it wants to roll out the iPhone slowly on a trusted network, that it has been using for years. The more untested 4G will come later.
This means you will not be able to talk and surf the web at the same time, something you can do on AT&T's version. AT&T claims that also means Verizon's phone will be slower than AT&T's phone.
In addition, because it uses a US-only CDMA network, it cannot be used in Europe. It may not be a good choice for international travelers.
Thinking of switching?
AT&T has a poor reputation for dropped calls. So if you are an AT&T customer thinking of switching for better reception, two cautions:
End of Free Upgrades
At the same time, Verizon is quietly ending its "New Every Two" free upgrade program.
This program gave Verizon Wireless customers a free standard cell phone every 2 years, or a $100 credit toward a smartphone. It was especially helpful for families with 4 phones on the same plan.
However, the Wall Street Journal says with Verizon the nation's most popular carrier, and now getting the iPhone, it no longer needs to offer this perk.
Existing customers will get one more free upgrade, and then they are done.
iPhone next month.... or wait?
Finally, both AT&T and Verizon will be releasing a new iPhone 5 this year, that is expected to resolve all antenna issues (AT&T is expected to get theirs first).
So people who want the latest, newest technology may want to wait a few more months, so you get the newest phone and you don't waste your money.
For more Don't Waste Your Money reports, click here.
Don't Waste Your Money is a registered trademark of the EW Scripps Co.
Copyright 2010 The E.W. Scripps Co. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.