But other than that, I have nothing against Verizon. This is all about the iPhone4, recently released in a Verizon-ready edition.
For starters, it has the same antenna issue as the iPhone4 for AT&T: if you hold it in just the right way, so that your fingers and palm bridge all the little gaps in the three-piece antenna that rings the device, your signal deteriorates, sometimes to the point of dropping calls. Like the AT&T version, it can be fixed with a bumper. And frankly, the bumper can be an enhancement, preventing the device from slipping and guarding the body from coming into contact with something hard during a drop, all in colorful style.
The antenna issue is serious enough that Consumer Reports says that's reason enough to not recommend the Verizon version, just as it did with the AT&T version:
The Verizon iPhone 4 has a problem that could cause the phone to drop calls, or be unable to place calls, in weak signal conditions, Consumer Reports engineers have found in lab tests.But that's no reason to buy the AT&T version over the Verizon version. The real problem is something else: Verizon's network is such that some of the most important multitasking features are lost when talking on the Verizon-based iPhone4, something that does not happen when using the AT&T-based iPhone4.
The problem is similar to the one we confirmed in July with the AT&T version of Apple's newest smart phone. It can occur when you hold either version of the phone in a specific but quite natural way in which a gap in the phone's external casing is covered. The phone performs superbly in most other respects, and using the iPhone 4 with a case can alleviate the problem.
Using a Verizon iPhone4 at the Royal Hawaiian Apple Store in Waikiki, allow me to demonstrate.
Now some of you might say, "What's the big deal? I don't need to browse while talking." Well, I do enjoy being able to look stuff up while on the phone. Sometimes the conversations I'm having, like with the aforementioned auntie, require me to look things up while I'm talking.
This extends to other Internet-based services as well, such as Google Maps, demonstrated below:
Similarly, I also check out the apps for Yelp, Wikipedia, and even the Apple Store (which I used to make Genius Bar appointments) while using the phone. With AT&T, this is absolutely no problem; with Verizon, it is absolutely impossible.
Now, there are other reasons to consider Verizon over AT&T. Supposedly some people get better service with Verizon, although I have had little complaint about my AT&T service. In Hawaii, it's great. In California and Nevada, it is as good as my auntie's Verizon service. The only time I had a problem was on the North Rim of the Grand Canyon, where I had to literally sit on the edge of the canyon with my hand extended over the abyss in order to pick up the faint signal coming from the South Rim's Grand Canyon Village, ten miles away, but that's apparently a problem for everyone. However, if AT&T's service is not a problem in your area, go with the AT&T phone. Otherwise you're missing out on what I consider one of the key features of this very smart smartphone.
Some say that AT&T's service, relative to Verizon's, will improve as more and more iPhone4 users shift to Verizon or Verizon picks up new customers who had waited for the iPhone4 to come to Verizon: much of AT&T's slowdown (wish I could find the link for this) came from having so many intensive iPhone users, a problem Verizon may now face.
And with a new iPhone5 (or at least an iPhone 4s) expected in the pipeline sometime around July, why not just wait a little more? Maybe the Verizon model of the next-generation iPhone will have resolved these issues.