Top 5 Future Cell Phones


Carrier-free iPhone

Venture capitalist John Stanton revealed an interesting bit of information at a seminar in 2011: Steve Jobs originally wanted to launch the iPhone on its own network and eschew the traditional partnerships with established cell phone carriers [source: Gadget Lab]. This would let Apple create a device without making compromises to any other entity. An iPhone owner wouldn't have to worry about features being omitted or cut back because of a disagreement between Apple and another company.

According to Stanton, Jobs explored the possibility of creating a smartphone network using existing WiFi networks. Ultimately, Jobs concluded such a path wasn't viable. But what if Apple were to try again?

A carrier-free iPhone might include functions that some cell phone carriers prefer remain absent from phones, such as tethering the smartphone to other devices to act as a sort of WiFi modem. But such a business model would require careful work on Apple's part. The company would have to create billing procedures and prices. Without the support of carriers, customers might be faced with a smartphone that costs much more money. And the shift away from traditional carriers could have massive economic consequences further down the road.

Could we see a carrier-free phone in the future? Is Apple willing to risk burning bridges with traditional carriers launching such a product should it prove to be feasible? Or is that the sort of move we'd only expect from a giant like Google? We'll have to wait and see.

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More Great Links


  • Bonnington, Christina. "Steve Jobs Wanted iPhone On Its Own Network, Carrier-Free." Gadget Lab, Wired. Nov. 15, 2011. (Dec. 1, 2011)
  • Buckely, Sean. "Nintendo's eShop plans: premium DLC, game demos, smartphone shopping, relevancy." Engadget. Oct. 28, 2011. (Dec. 2, 2011)
  • Cheng, Roger. "Android super smartphones: Too much of a good thing?" CNET. Oct. 19, 2011. (Dec. 2, 2011)
  • Choney, Suzanne. "The rise of the super-smartphone." MSNBC. March 18, 2010. (Dec. 2, 2011)
  • Earley, Dustin. "Game over: Smartphone game revenue leaves Nintendo and Sony in the dust." Android and Me. Nov. 9, 2011. (Dec. 2, 2011)
  • Gannes, Liz and Fried, Ina. "The Facebook Phone: It's Finally Real and It's Name is Buffy." All Things D. Nov.15, 2011. (Dec. 2, 2011)
  • Haselton, Todd. "An Amazon Smartphone? It Could Happen Next Year, Analysts Say." Fox News. Nov. 17, 2011. (Dec. 1, 2011)
  • Leckness, Chris. "Xbox Companion for Windows Phone and Xbox Dashboard Update." Gotta Be Mobile. Dec. 9, 2011. (Dec. 9, 2011)
  • Lowensohn, Josh. "Nintendo CEO re-affirms no smartphone games plan." CNET. Sept. 15, 2011. (Dec. 2, 2011)


5 Ways to Donate Your Old Smartphone or Cell Phone to Charity

5 Ways to Donate Your Old Smartphone or Cell Phone to Charity

Learn more about five ways to donate your old cell phone or smartphone to charities that recycle or refurbish old phones.