iPhone won't work in parts of New England
Vermonters won’t be able to take advantage of Apple’s iPhone because it will be offered by a wireless carrier that doesn’t maintain a network in the state.
The iPhone, which combines an iPod music player, cellphone, and full-featured Internet browser, goes on sale in June, but only in areas served by AT&T’s Cingular Wireless, with which Apple has an exclusive distribution deal.
That means some residents of New Hampshire and Maine won't be able to use iPhones. In Maine, Cingular covers only the southern tier, up Interstate 95 and in Greater Portland, the company said. Coverage in New Hampshire exists in most major population areas.
The iPhone service won’t be available in all or large portions of Alaska, Colorado, the Dakotas, Idaho, Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Mexico, upstate New York, Oregon, Utah and Wyoming, among other places.
"It was a pretty big letdown," said Don Mayer, CEO of Small Dog Electronics, an Apple dealer in Waitsfield, Vt. "I would have much rather seen them come out with a variety of carriers so places like Vermont won’t be left out in the cold."
Cingular customers can roam on other networks or other carriers, but new customers must live in communities the company serves. A Cingular spokeswoman said the company has no plans to expand in Vermont, at least not before 2009.
The iPhone was unveiled this month during the annual Macworld Conference and Expo in San Francisco. The device is a cross between another of Apple’s industry-changing devices, the iPod, and a cellphone.
(Globe staff and wire reports)