Barclays has predicted that US wireless carrier Verizon will start selling the iPhone from 2011, according to a report in Business Week.
James Ratcliffe, an analyst with Barclays, said that if the company started offering Apple's smartphone, he expected its customer base to increase by 900,000 users, bringing its total to 2.8 million.
Ratcliffe said: “As the most popular handset in the marketplace, the iPhone should help drive subscribership. We believe most of the activations will come from pent-up iPhone demand from Verizon’s current subscriber base.”
The analyst also downplayed Verizon's profit forecast for next year, claiming that the company would have to come up with handset subsidies in order to attract customers to its network.
Verizon has expressed its eagerness to offer Apple's device to its users in the past, and is looking forward to a possible deal with the Cupertino-based IT giant.
Ivan Seidenberg, chief executive officer of Verizon Communications said: "That decision’s really Apple’s. We stand ready to do it, but that’s an Apple decision.”