Negative advertising by Verizon has dashed hopes the carrier will begin selling the iPhone in 2010, if ever. The new "iDon't" campaign spotlights perceived iPhone shortcomings while promoting a new Verizon Android smartphone due next month.
A 30-second television spot, first aired Saturday, starts by listing features lacking on the iPhone. "iDon't have a real keyboard, iDon't run simultaneous apps, iDon't take 5-megapixel pictures," the ad begins, looking much like Apple's own advertising.
The ending? "Everything iDon't, Droid Does." Followed by "November" and a URL. At droiddoes.com, viewers can leave an e-mail address to receive more information.
This is not the first attack ad Verizon has run targeting the iPhone of late, though it is the most pointed. An earlier TV ad parodied Apple's "there's an app for that" spot by comparing Verizon and AT&T 3G coverage. Its tag: "There's a map for that."
Such negative campaigning makes it appear unlikely that Verizon will soon begin selling iPhones, providing competition for AT&T in the U.S. It was a hope many AT&T customers, angry with their carrier, held dearly.
Verizon, which negotiated for rights to the iPhone before its release, certainly seems an unlikely Apple partner now. Stranger things have happened, but Apple has a long memory for slights and it is hard to imagine an iPhone in Verizon's future.
I would not be surprised, however, to see some "Droid Doesn't" advertising from Apple, touting iTunes, Macintosh, and 85,000 iPhone applications.