Although Sprint is being very hush-hush about media reports that Apple will be teaming with the mobile carrier for its upcoming iPhone 5 this fall, the Wall Street Journal reported last week that Apple’s deal with Sprint was imminent. In addition, the report notes that Sprint will have the iPhone 5 available to its subscribers in mid-October, the same time that competitors AT&T and Verizon Wireless would have it.
Earlier this year, Verizon became only the second carrier to have the rights to carry the iPhone after AT&T had the exclusive rights to it for three-and-a-half-years. Verizon and AT&T both introduced the iPhone 4 around the same time in early February, and if reports are correct, Sprint will join in the two top carriers later this year.
“If you don’t have [the iPhone], for some customers you’re not even in consideration [as a carrier],” Rick Franklin, an industry analyst at Edward Jones & Co. told the Kansas City Star on Wednesday.
According to reports, Sprint has told its employees to not give any details on the alleged reports, and instead encouraged them to give a “no comment” response. A spokesman for Sprint said the company would not comment on “rumor and speculation.” If you recall, this is almost exactly what happened late last year and early this year when the Verizon/Apple deal seemed to be imminent. Apple, however, likes to be secretive about any deals being made, and if a deal between the two sides are reached, the announcement likely won’t be made until later this fall.