I’m just returning from a short vacation and the first news I’ve read that really caught my attention is that Sprint it getting the iPhone. This is massive, this is a large shift for the mobile industry specifically in the US. It will mark the first time in the almost 4 years the iPhone has been available to all the major US carriers (if the T-Mobile AT&T acquisition happens) will have the iPhone which signifies something very important. Because they will all have the iPhone they will all finally be on a level playing field. Some people think that Android is good enough and it is and that’s all it is good enough, it’s still not on the same level as the iPhone in so many ways. It’s the iPhone that makes them all equal.
In some European countries the iPhone has been on all the major carriers or at least most of them for over a year and in some cases 2 or maybe even 3. Customers there have been able to stick with their carrier of choice and get the iPhone. No more deciding you want an iPhone and having to switch carriers to get it.
So what is so great about all (soon to be) 3 of the big carriers being on a level playing field? Why is this so important? Well for the consumer who’s going out and buying iPhone’s this finally means that YOU will come first in the eyes of the telco. The company selling the iPhone will have to think about customer service because now you can just pick up and go next door to another carrier and sign up with them. No more being stuck with AT&T if you want an iPhone. This is also monumental in that now the telco’s will have to start to really compete with each other again on so many levels like back a few years ago when there was a real competitiveness in the mobile air. People chose 1 carrier over another by being wooed with a leather case and a cigarette charger. We will see innovation in the mobile space like we haven’t in years. Maybe mobile POS payments will finally come to be in the mass market, maybe we will see more competitive rates, maybe we will see better roaming agreements. In fact maybe we’ll really see innovation like new features you’ve never heard of and services beyond our wildest dreams.
AT&T is the largest and Verizon has the most stable (in my research) in terms of their customers, but now they will really have to fight to keep it that way. I’m hoping by Sprint getting the iPhone it will make AT&T and Verizon more honest and competitive.