According to The Wall Street Journal, a perfect storm is brewing in mobile land.
In a major break with industry practice, Verizon Wireless said it will allow consumers to use any compatible cellphone on its network and allow open access to the Web and third-party applications.
Verizon Wireless’ announcement comes just two months before the FCC auctions off a large chunk of lucrative radio spectrum, which wireless networks are based on.
Whatever company acquires a swath of that airwaves will have to allow any phone and any software to operate on the wireless network it builds.
Harold Feld, of the public interest group Media Access Project, said it was likely Google’s earlier announcement that forced Verizon’s hand. “I think the announcement by Google that it plans to bid for the spectrum forced Verizon to make a decision,” said Mr. Feld. “It’s a large block of spectrum that Verizon needs.”