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Verizon Gets the iPhone

Two women compare the new iPhone 4 (right) and an iPhone 3 in front of Manhattan's 5th Avenue Apple Store.
Emmanuel Dunand | AFP | Getty Images
Two women compare the new iPhone 4 (right) and an iPhone 3 in front of Manhattan's 5th Avenue Apple Store.

Apple's iPhone is now on Verizon wireless.

Since the time of its initial release, in January 2007, the iPhone had only been available for AT&T wireless. Until today.

Amid much fanfare—at 11:11 AM on 01/11/2011—Verizon wireless made their official iPhone announcement.

So what are the main differences in features between the AT&T version of the iPhone and the Verizon version of the iPhone?

Well, apparently, there really aren't any.

Because work on the new Verizon iPhone had been done under the shroud of Apple's legendary secrecy, there was much speculation about the possibility of design or feature changes to the Verizon version of the iPhone. That has not turned out to be the case.

Verizon's iPhone, which will begin selling on February 10, will be nearly identical to the AT&T version, except for the under the hood changes required to run on Verizon's CDMA network.

The sole exception to this appears to be a mobile hotspot feature available on the new Verizon phone that is not currently available on the AT&T version.

A mobile hotspot allows users to wirelessly "tether" up to five devices—such as a laptop computer—to their iPhones, permitting wireless Internet access for the tethered device. Details about this feature are available from the techie blog MacOSRumors. The blog further advises that this feature may become available to AT&T customers through a simple software update in the future.

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  • Jeff Cox is finance editor for CNBC.com.

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    Lawrence Delevingne is the ‘Big Money’ enterprise reporter for CNBC.com and NetNet.

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