Sprint Bets $20 Billion on iPhone Over 4 Years

Sprint iPhone

We already know that Sprint will be carrying the iPhone, and it’ll be the only carrier in the U.S. offering an unlimited data plan for the blockbuster smartphone.

What we don’t know: Sprint is going all in to secure the iPhone deal from Apple.

According to WSJ, the third largest carrier in the U.S. had agreed to buy at least 30.5 millions iPhones over the course of four years from Apple in deal worth $20 billion, and it wouldn’t start profiting from it until 2014.

That’s a huge gamble on Sprint’s side, being a latecomer into a game currently dominated by AT&T and Verizon. And the competition is likely to worsen if T-Mobile manage to get hold of the iPhone.

Last week, T-Mobile CMO Cole Brodman expressed that his company too is interested in carrying the iPhone. He wrote the following in T-Mobile’s company blog:

We’ve heard from many customers who love their T-Mobile service, but are disappointed that we don’t carry the iPhone. To these customers, first, thank you for your business.  Please know that we think the iPhone is a great device and Apple knows that we’d like to add it to our line-up. Today, there are over a million T-Mobile customers using unlocked iPhones on our network. We are interested in offering all of our customers a no-compromise iPhone experience on our network.

iPhone 5 Exclusive

A report by BGR shows that the deal is not as single-sided as it seems. According to it, Sprint would be given exclusive right to sell the iPhone 5, reportedly to be a 4G WiMAX device. The other two carriers, AT&T and Verizon, will only be allowed to launch the lower-end iPhone 4S initially, before they can launch the iPhone 5 as an LTE device early next year.

Yes, the report is sure to raise some eyebrows. But Apple’s “Let’s talk iPhone” event less than 12 hours away, and we’ll soon know whether or not it’s a myth.

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