I have no time to respond to each, so let me just respond in general, and mostly with questions.
First: I have no interest with a Verizon iPhone, even if Apple manufactures one for them. I did not have a very good experience with their customer service.
Now, as to the growth rate data provided here for the iPhone, the data reflected a tremendous expansion worldwide, the past two years. Has someone standardized the growth rate, once the tremendous increase in the potential customer base worldwide is factored in the equation?
In regard data pertinent to the US only, I have not seen any long term comparative study of the customer base of Verizon, AT&T, Sprint and T-Mobile -- before and after the iPhone was introduced. Sprint has been losing customers, like crazy, even before teh iPhone was even introduced. Where was the additional AT&T customer base coming from to account for this growth? Were they all largely from Verizon or from the bleedsing customer base of Sprint? or T-Mobile?
For the AT&T data itself, if the iPhone data shows a linear growth rate already, rather than a accelerating growth rate, then we expect the next stage to be the deceleration phase. Or, does anyone really think that the iPhone growth rate in the US will remain linear "forever", if Apple sticks exclusively with AT&T?
How long has RIM been selling through AT&T? Among these AT&T RIM customers, what is the existing customer base? Was there a dramatic and continuing rate of decline of AT&T RIM customer base since the iPhone was introduced? When did AT&T begin selling Android phones and growth rate within the carrier?
If the iPhone exclusive to AT&T is not significantly cannibalizing the AT&T RIM user base, nor impeding the growth rate of Android phones sold through AT&T, these data might or would be indicative of brand loyalty or perhaps provide insight of the userbase of those who do not like anything Apple. It could be predictive also of the scenario that may play out within Verizon when (not if) Apple decides eventually to manufacture a Verizon iPhone. It is also possible that former Verizon customers who became AT&T customers because of the iPhone might migrate back to Verizon. However, even with a Verizon iPhone, we cannot underestimate the animosity and number of anti-Apple haters. For this group, there are more viable choices now, instead of just the limited choices of Wintel vs Apple computers during the height of the PC era.
In regard timing, is it really in the best interest of Apple or its current and potential customers to simply wait until the LTE platform becomes more in widespread use in the US?
Based from circulating information -- some unsubstantiated rumors that Apple has not categorically denied -- Apple may indeed be exploring (if not already preparing) to manufacture non-GSM iPhones. More than likely, the foray into non-GSM iPhones may begin abroad, especially China, since this is not covered by any contract between Apple and AT&T. More than likely, non-GSM iPhones will become available in the US, once Apple's contract with AT&T expires, or if Apple could find a loophole in the contract.
There is no technical constraint that will impede Apple to create non-GSM phones. Other phone manufacturers have shown that this is technically and profitable.
My own bias is that it would be a great mistake for Apple to cede the customer base of other US carriers or even abroad -- unless any of us believe that there will always be massive and increasing rate of migration of customers from Verizon to AT&T.
It may become a different ballgame altogether if Apple continues to innovate, provides a more satisfying integrated ecosystem and maintains an Apps Store that is significantly much better than those of the other phones. In this regard, I welcome the competition from the likes of RIM, Google, and other phone manufacturers to motivate and keep Apple on its toes.
The only caveat to these speculations is that we won't have definitive answers until after a few years. The other harsh reality is that no corporation has remained dominant forever, in any industry. Many, in fact, completely vanished.