Interesting behind-the-scenes snapshot.
Mr. Jobs played hardball. He pointed to statistics showing that carriers' traditional voice revenues were declining. But he also made a compelling argument: He said that Apple could help Cingular capitalize on the Internet, people familiar with the discussions say.
Early on, both sides determined it would be a bad idea for Apple to offer its own cellphone service, leasing access to Cingular's network. Even though Virgin Mobile USA and other startup cellphone operators were using that method with some success, Mr. Jobs was cautious. He viewed the cellphone business as an unforgiving one, where carriers are blamed for network problems and overwhelmed by customer complaints.
Reminder: iPhone (or whatever it may ultimately be called) won't be unique when it ships: