So, when Verizon announced last year that they would be opening up their traditionally locked-down network to “Any App, Any Device,” we should have known better than to put too much faith in Big Red. After all, the move to allow unlocked handsets to work on Verizon’s network could possibly hurt Verizon Wireless’s bottom line.
Proving that Verizon doesn’t really want to open their network to consumer devices, the carrier has released a list of hardware compatible with the Verizon CDMA network sans contract. The only problem is that the list of compatible hardware stops short of including any consumer devices. Sure, there are modems, routers, and even a criminal ankle bracelet that will work on Verizon’s “open” network without a wireless contract. But, from a consumer stand point, Verizon’s open initiative looks to be full of hot air (putting it gently).
Interestingly, the sole mobile phone ever announced to be compatible with Verizon (pictured) has failed to materialize. The AirVoice handset was shown off by Verizon’s CEO earlier this year, but was left out of the official compatibility list. Verizon must really be trying to keep as many subscribers locked to wireless contracts as possible.
Of course, Verizon could just be taking its sweet time in testing and certifying actual mobile phone hardware for their “open network,” and we could be jumping the gun here. On the other hand, would it be all that surprising if Verizon’s open initiative was more lip-service (during a crucial spectrum auction that highlighted the importance of open networks) than a shift in corporate philosophy?