So yesterday over at Engadget, Nilay Patel reported on court filings from Apple regarding a class-action lawsuit in California, in which filings Apple acknowledges that its original 2007 deal gave AT&T iPhone exclusivity for five years. But Patel, who is smart, also wrote:
Now, this all went down in October of 2008, and while it’s sort of
amazing we hadn’t seen it earlier, the real question is whether or
not the exclusivity deal is still on the books. (The case is
ongoing, but most of the relevant bits have been under seal since
2009.) Contracts can be canceled, amended, and breached in many
ways, and AT&T’s spotty recent service history plus the explosion
of the iPhone and the mobile market in general have given Apple
any number of reasons to revisit the deal.
The original deal was for five years, but we don’t know whether that deal is still in place. Easy, right?
But now today’s news is full of reports like this one: “Apple Confirms AT&T’s iPhone Exclusivity Until 2012”:
For Verizon users who had their hopes up to get the new iPhone on
their network this summer, we’re sorry. Apple has confirmed AT&T
has exclusive rights to the iPhone until 2012.
AT&T signed a five-year deal in 2007 with Apple to keep the
popular phone on only their network for the duration of the
contract. If the iPhone were to go to Verizon at any point before
2012, the contract would have to be broken, an act that Apple has
confirmed will not happen as of now.
Apple has confirmed no such things. This just isn’t true.
★ Tuesday, 11 May 2010