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Apple's Jan. 27 'one more thing' could be Verizon iPhone

Though a new iPhone model isn't expected until June, a new report suggests Apple could use its Jan. 27 media event to announce that the next-generation handset is coming to Verizon this summer.

That's the prediction by Peter Misek, analyst with Canaccord Adams, issued Wednesday. He also expects Apple to introduce iPhone OS 4.0 as part of its product introduction at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in San Francisco next week. At product unveilings, Apple chief executive Steve Jobs often uses the phrase "One more thing..." to indicate a surprise product announcement towards the end of his keynote presentations.

Misek said he believes tiered data plans are imminent with most wireless carriers in the U.S., but his checks with industry sources indicate that a Verizon-capable iPhone would still carry an unlimited data plan. He also said that the new handset will run on both CDMA and GSM networks.

"Together with our semi-conductor partners, we have ascertained that there is a reasonable chance the Asian supply chain is prepping for mass production of a new iPhone in March, for availability in late Q2, likely June," he said.

In addition, he predicted the new handset will have different pricing than Apple's current model. However, he said, sources have not provided any details on prices.

Looking further into the future, Misek expects Apple to release an LTE-capable "4GS" iPhone in June 2011.

He also gave a run-down of features expected in the new iPhone OS 4.0. The list — including multitasking, a simpler user interface, and a new way to sync contacts and calendar apps — are identical to a rumor revealed by a Web site Tuesday.

A year ago, Misek predicted that Apple would introduce three new iPhones in 2009, including a smaller version that would have a $99 price point. While Apple did introduce a handset at that price, it was the previous year's model, the iPhone 3G.

In other Verizon-related news Wednesday, various reports picked up the predictions of analyst Ashok Kumar with Northeast Securities. Kumar believes the tablet will be available in a subsidized model through Verizon at launch.

Kumar spoke with AppleInsider earlier this month and gave those same details, along with additional information he has allegedly heard from suppliers overseas. In particular, he said the tablet processor will be manufactured by Samsung and will be based on the Cortex-A8 ARM architecture, rather than the new Cortex-A9, with a speed of about 1GHz.

Last year, Kumar correctly predicted that Google would release and sell its own handset, which came true with the introduction of the Nexus One. However, the analyst also saw criticism after he noted that iPhone sales in China were "disappointing" before the device was even on sale.

As for a Verizon-compatible iPhone, Kumar disagrees with Misek that the handset would be a world phone capable of both CDMA and GSM networks. Kumar previously told AppleInsider that dual-mode chips from Qualcomm will not likely see enough availability for a June iPhone launch. Instead, Kumar expects a separate CDMA-only phone to be introduced in 2010, alongside the existing GSM-only models.