Verizon’s network may be the envy of its peers, but its smart phones definitely aren’t, writes Priya Ganapati. Caught off guard by the iPhone phenomenon, the carrier has taken a very cautious approach to new devices, subjecting them to a long testing process. As a result, while its competitors have carved out niches, Verizon is stuck in place.
AT&T has the iPhone, Sprint has the inside line on Palm, and T-Mobile has established itself as the Google Android carrier. All Verizon has is the popular, but critically panned BlackBerry Storm and dull BlackBerry Tour. “They recognize they don’t have compelling devices right now,” says one industry researcher, “but feel they can make up for it with network quality.”