Cingular/AT&T (I wish they would finally make the switch) made a deal with Apple to be the exclusive provider for the iPhone. They did this without seeing a prototype, so it was a leap of faith. Considering Apple's recent track record, who could blame them. As you can see in this article, Did Verizon Pass on the iPhone, it could have been a revenue sharing issue. Up until now, wireless carriers have been able to control the manufacturers when it comes to device features, etc. The deal with Cingular is unprecedented because it allowed Apple to build the iPhone to their specifications. Take Motorola for instance, Microsoft and Verizon dictate how long their splash screens appear on the Moto Q.
I do think Verizon will eventually carry the iPhone or perhaps iPhone 2. They are too big of a network to ignore as Apple will want to expand their reach.
That is what I am waiting for Chris myself. Unless of course ATT will end up having as good as coverage as Verizon does in rural away from interstates. I hope the iPhone does well for sure. Also I need more than 8GB so I am holding out for the version 2 with more memory
Chris: I am armed and dangerous with this technical stuff. I am presently on Verizon with the Motorola Q [which has been a personal disaster] and miss my old Blackberry Nextel. I want to get the new I phone, but don't know whether to try and wait for the trees to shake out. Any new thoughts since your posting was written a month ago. In reading your posting, I could tell that you were up on the architecture issues, etc., and I don't want to get stuck with an inferior coverage contract. Tom T