Why Verizon Sides With Samsung Over Apple

FOSS Patents has published a great article on Verizon’s stance regarding Apple’s defense maneuvers filed against Android handset makers Samsung and HTC. From the article:

Verizon, the largest U.S. wireless carrier, implores the United States District Court for the Northern District of California to deny Apple’s request for a US-wide preliminary injunction against four Samsung products (the Infuse 4G, Galaxy S 4G and Droid Charge smartphones, and the Galaxy Tab 10.1 tablet computer), arguing that such a decision would run counter to the public interest as it “would hinder Verizon Wireless in developing and deploying its next generation high-speed LTE [fourth-generation] network, the job growth dependant [sic] on that network, and will undercut key public policy goals, including expansion of American’s [sic] access to broadband networks and faster communication with emergency personnel.”

I am not sure how much good Verizon’s request will do in the legal arena, but I read it as “Verizon has bet big on LTE, and without these devices we’re screwed.” Then I came across this:

However, it remains to be seen whether the judge will believe that the market-leading carrier represents the public interest, given that Verizon’s objective of commodotizing smartphone technologies is transparent and that the same California-based federal court has in its records for another case, Oracle v. Google, a document that shows Verizon and Google promised each other unspecified favors, potentially anti-competitive ones since they did not document them in writing.

I would think that Verizon prefers Android over iOS for the simple fact that they can lock down the phones, brand them with their own logo and preload them with crapware, something not possible with the iPhone. Apple’s stance from the beginning has been that they control the hardware and software, and the phone companies are just the pipes. This view is inline with how we view terrestrial phone services and broadband internet today, but something new to the mobile space, and I am sure it makes Verizon uncomfortable.