Its been more than a suggestion at this point, more than a small wish. AT&T's strangle hold over the iPhone technology has been one of the strongest reasons that it has not swept through the smart phone market in an imperial way. The main competitor in this imaginary scenario of future competition would be Verizon, which has often be lauded as the true service parallel to AT&T. Since the iPhone has maintained its exclusive contract with AT&T through all four generations of the iPhone it seems as though all iPhone users would have settled into their provider. Only some, perhaps.
Business Insider has recently put together a poll of current iPhone users to see who would actually switch to Verizon if it was made available for their precious device. Twenty-three percent of those surveyed said they would jump ship to Verizon if the option was given, which three percent mentioned Sprint and two percent T-Mobile. What this leaves is a sixty-three percent group of people who would stay put, but in reality that number is not that huge.
If we are to look at what it really costs to break a cell phone service contract, start out with a new provider, and go through an entirely new plan it seems that few users would really want to make this jump after having been with AT&T solidly. If this twenty-three percent was then matched with the Verizon users that would swim to the iPhone if it showed up in their stores then we are talking about a huge market that may be just what Apple needs to drop an atom bomb on the Blackberry and Android. With the new limits built in to the AT&T contract and the problems with the iPhone 4 Apple is going to need everything it can get to keep people from heading over to other provider and phone developers, and bringing in a more competitive cell phone service market is what's necessary.