WASHINGTON — Apple Inc. plans to make a version of its popular iPhone 4 available through Verizon Wireless by early next year, according to a published report.
The iPhone is now available only through AT&T Inc. Adding Verizon Wireless, the nation's largest mobile phone operator, could significantly boost sales of Apple's phones, which face rising competition from smartphones that use Google Inc.'s Android operating system.
The New York Times, citing an anonymous source briefed by Apple, reported the development late Friday. The Wall Street Journal also reported the move earlier this week.
Jeffrey Nelson, a spokesman for Verizon Wireless, declined to comment. Tom Neumayr, a spokesman for Apple, said he wouldn't comment on “speculation.”
It's long been rumored that a version of the iPhone would soon be made for Verizon Wireless. A Verizon Wireless executive earlier this week downplayed the possibility of an iPhone using the company's current network. The executive suggested that an iPhone could be made available later for a faster Verizon Wireless network.