Analyst's get to have all the fun. Their pure conjecture goes places. But, if it wasn't interesting, even if it's just an after-thought in your day, then they probably wouldn't get the coverage. You get to be the judge whether or not they're interesting because of the content itself, or how ridiculous it may be from time to time. Apple's intention of deploying the iPhone onto other carriers may be a complete mystery to all the official channels (except to Steve Jobs, of course), but that's not stopping the rumor mill from spewing out even more possibilities. This time around, and not for the first time, we get T-Mobile USA being the first-round pick for distribution outside of AT&T.
We have to admit that we're pretty excited just in the fact that we're not reiterating another Verizon/iPhone rumor. It's time to change things up! According to Shaw Wu, an analyst for Kaufman Bros., he believes that the iPhone is coming to T-Mobile before any other carrier in the United States. He's getting his information from "sources," and they say that the iPhone's inexorable appearance on other carriers is "closer than reality than ever." (Yes, that's the quote.) The sources also suggest that an announcement to that effect could be released by the Fall of this year, or early next.
"While the general consensus is around Verizon (which we believe will happen eventually), we continue to believe that T-Mobile USA is the most likely candidate given its use of similar cellular technology as AT&T," he wrote. "Also, we are picking up that T-Mobile views the iPhone as key in winning back lost customers and as such could be more likely to agree to Apple's terms."
Yes, there are some good reasons as to why T-Mobile would be the "logical" choice for Apple to go with. After all, the iPhone 3GS and iPhone 4 are capable of running on T-Mobile's 3G (UMTS/HSPA) at the 2100 MHz frequencies, so there wouldn't be much of a difference in the technology needed to launch a T-Mobile-branded iPhone. Wu also needed to point out that Android is a growing monster in Apple's closet, and according to the sources, it is definitely in Apple's sights to regulate that growth. And, while every single launch of the iPhone has been monumental for the mobile industry (especially AT&T and Apple), it would do Apple a lot of good to start launching the handset on other carriers. Especially ones where Android plays a big part of their device listing.
By now, we can all safely say that the iPhone is going to hit another carrier, here in the United States, eventually. No, we don't know when. And no, we can't say for sure which carrier will get the opportunity to launch the Juggernaut from Cupertino, but we know it's coming. Will it be the iPhone 3GS? Will it be the iPhone 4? How about the iPhone 4GX? (That's not a real phone, folks.) It's anyone's guess at this point, except for the one man that could answer any question we ever wanted to know (about the iPhone, probably). He probably won't tell us, though. Anyone want to send him an email?