Apple’s iPhone Finally Coming to Verizon

After four years of AT&T exclusivity, another carrier gets a crack

The big story in tech media this week: as expected, Verizon announced on Tuesday that it will finally carry Apple's iPhone on its network. Until now, Apple had an exclusive deal with AT&T.

Now, Verizon's 93 million customers will be able to carry iPhones. Or, perhaps more accurately, iPhone enthusiasts will now have a choice between AT&T and Verizon. (As Mashable points out, many current iPhone users are eager to switch to Verizon — and are even willing to concede a fee to get out of their current AT&T contracts to do so.)

Verizon made the announcement at a press event in New York. "Today we're partnering with a giant of the industry," Lowell MacAdam, chief executive of Verizon Wireless, said at the start of Tuesday's event. "And that's Apple."

Here are some highlights from the numerous liveblogs (Engadget, Mashable, New York Times' Bits, etc.) covering the proceedings:

>> Verizon's iPhone 4 will be available in early February.

>> Pre-orders for existing customers begin February 3; Feb. 10 for everyone else.

>> The phone will be carried in Verizon stores and Apple stores as well as online.

>> Prices: $199.99 for the 16 gigabyte version, $299 for 32GB.

>> However, Verizon did not announce pricing for service plans.

>> This is pretty cool: Verizon's iPhone will also work as a mobile hotspot that can power up to five devices.

[Photo via Engadget]