Apple Hints iPhone 5 Coming To Verizon In July

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As Verizon’s systems get crushed with customers eager to buy an iPhone 4, Apple has hinted that the iPhone 5 will be coming to the carrier in July.

Everyone knows that Apple will be refreshing the iPhone hardware this summer. But the big question about today’s Verizon launch is whether that carrier will get new hardware in less than six months. It seems likely. Apple is strongly rumored to be working on a dual-mode handset that works on both GSM and CDMA networks. But where does that leave VZW’s early adopters? How are they going to feel about buying a device made obsolete in a few months?

The New York Times columnist David Pogue asked Apple these questions. Here’s what Apple said:

Apple won’t say if there will be an iPhone 5 for Verizon this summer. (“Let’s put it this way: We’re not stupid,” is all an Apple rep would say.) But if it does, and you buy an iPhone 4 now, you’ll be stuck with an outdated phone in only five months.

To me, this reads like a tacit admission that the iPhone 5 will launch on Verizon and AT&T simultaneously this summer. Obviously Apple won’t pre-announce the iPhone 5 on VZW because no one that network will buy the iPhone 4 today.

As Apple says, “We’re not stupid.”