Verizon’s Negative iPhone Campaign: iPhone vs Android

In Canada, Rogers was the first wireless carrier to offer the iPhone. Recently, Telus and Bell announced they would be carrying the iPhone as well to go along with their new shared HSPA network. That brings three carriers in Canada carrying the iPhone. Canadians are very happy about this.

Unfortunately our neighbours down South aren’t so lucky. Their only iPhone carrier is AT&T (which only recently allowed MMS; tethering still is not possible) and it seems like it’s going to stay that way. You would think the USA, the land of opportunity and competition would have more than one iPhone carrier right? Well, here’s some news that had people buzzing over the weekend.

Verizon will not be carrying the iPhone it seems and their new anti-iPhone campaign cements this. They will be launching their own Android powered phone called “Droid”. This massive “iDon’t” campaign puts the iPhone versus Android debate up once again. Within the following ad Americans are told what the iPhone can’t do compared to Android’s Open Source OS. Take a look at the following video:

iPhone versus Android. Who’s the winner? Well, it’s really up to you to decide. Sure, the iPhone doesn’t allow all apps to run in the background, but the ones that do (iPod, Mail, Phone, Messages, etc) work pretty well. The ad also knocks the iPhone’s camera and non-removable battery. It’s clear that Verizon is pretty desperate to put some doubt into prospective iPhone owners.

Android is making some waves in the smartphone industry. What makes Android so unique is that their OS is widely available so it can be purchased on multiple networks. So you can see how Americans will think twice when they watch this video.

This Negative Campaign is Good for iPhone Owners

The iPhone is not perfect–every phone has its flaws. However, for what it is, it’s one of the best smartphones you can buy today and currently sets the benchmark that other companies are striving to catch up to. Think about it. There’s always talks of the next “iPhone killer” but these so called phones end up fizzling away with their backbone-less hype. The iPhone has changed the name of the smartphone game. It’s the one to beat. You don’t see comparisons of companies striving to match the features of the Blackberry Storm or Android do you?

If you jailbreak your iPhone, you can customize all you want. But what about people who don’t want to jailbreak? They have been stuck with the SAME ringtones and SMS alert tones for almost 3 years! Sure, maybe Apple wants you to buy a ringtone, but new SMS alert tones would be nice.

As an iPhone owner I see this negative campaign as a good thing. Competitors have stepped up to the plate finally and are actually offering some competition to the iPhone. I think of the Palm Pre as an example. Why is this good for us? Well, it will make Apple open its eyes and make the iPhone even better. There is always room to improve, and there’s no better motivation to improve than when your competitors start making some real noise.

What’s your take? Are Android phones and Palm Pres the only real competitors to the iPhone at the moment?