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I don’t think anyone, least of all a phone site, can deny that the iPhone is the most highly anticipated gadget of 2007. And because of this we are seeing two things – tons of press releases coming out every day with the word “iPhone” in them simply to beg for attention, and the publishing of every possible whisper and rumor about the iPhone. This week a number of reliable publications have published statements that border between rumor and fact. They all come from unnamed analysts and all look suspicious enough that we will not publish them on Phone Scoop’s news page. However they are just believable enough enough that they could be true. Because of Apple’s incredible secrecy, there’s no way to know.
At the start of the week, another iPhone story in USA today casually claimed that Cingular has a five year exclusive deal with Apple, preventing the company from launching phones with any other American carrier or developing CDMA handsets during that time. However the paper does not cite a source for this information and even after it was published, the only thing AT&T and Apple will say is that the two have a “multi-year exclusive agreement.” However USA Today pulled a number of other parts from this article in a revision to it three days later, but did not change or pull the statement about the five year agreement, lending it an air of authenticity. If this is true it would be rather unprecedented.
Last night an analyst on CNBC said that the iPhone would be available on June 20th. Immediately the internet was all aflutter with stories on this, until people started investigating what the analyst actually said. It turns out that a store employee told the analyst the iPhone would be available on the 20th. One Cingular store employee. Gizmodo asked a Cingular employee and was told the 11th. Forbes did its own investigation and was given dates between June 11 and 22. Wireless Info asked in a number of stores throughout Boston and was given answers anywhere from June to August. And both Apple and Cingular continue to say that the iPhone is on track for arrival in late June.
The only thing we know for sure about the release is that both Cingular and Apple have continually been adamant about a June launch, and that the iPhone has cleared FCC approval, so it could happen at any time. We also know that many people have talked about June 11th because that is the start of Apple’s Worldwide Developer Conference(WWDC) and June 12th because that is the date of Job’s keynote at the WWDC. If Jobs does not announce the iPhone is available at the conference, it is possible he will announce the date it will become available.