A few years back, Verizon was the
place to go if you were an Android user, choosing to heavily embrace and market Android phones because AT&T had locked up the iPhone exclusively. It's amazing how quickly things can change. JR Raphael over at Computer World
has a good piece arguing that Verizon really has become the carrier to avoid if you're interested in getting the latest and greatest Android handset, given it has become standard operating procedure to offer new Android handsets much later than everyone else (HTC One), if they're able to offer them at all (Nexus 4). Notes Raphael:
It's actually gotten to the point where anytime I write about a hot Android new device, I count the seconds from when I hit "publish" until the moment I see the inevitable disheartened comment: "Great news...except for those of us stuck on Verizon." Let's face it: With the exception of the Droid Razr HD phones last fall, pretty much every exciting Android device in recent memory has launched outside of Verizon's domain (initially, at least, if not permanently). In fact, if I were to list the devices I'd consider the best overall Android phones on the market right now, three out of four wouldn't currently be available to Verizon subscribers.
The issue goes deeper if you also consider Verizon's decision to block Google Wallet
in order to give their own Isis mobile payment service an unfair leg up in the market. The problem for Android fans currently on Verizon? Verizon Wireless continues to lead nearly every customer service study for postpaid carriers, so Android fans who head to other carriers not only have to deal with worse support and service, they also have to deal with significantly smaller LTE footprints and network coverage in general.
In that sense, Android fans are sort of damned if they do, damned if they don't. Still, if Verizon's earnings last quarter
are any indication, the seeming decline in serious Verizon Android support hasn't resulted in any meaningful loss of customers.