A T-Mobile store in New York. (Justin Lane / EPA )
Sprint has it. Verizon has it. AT&T has it. And next week, T-Mobile might announce it is getting it too.
We're talking about the iPhone, of course.
In a recent note to investors, Merrill Lynch analyst Scott Craig said "speculation is heightening" that T-Mobile USA's parent company Deutsche Telecom will announce a deal to make the iPhone available to T-Mobile users as early as next week, Fortune reports.
Quiz: What set the Internet on fire in 2012?
If the speculation is accurate, loyal T-Mobile subscribers will soon have a shot at getting their very own iPhone, without having to change carriers, or go through the rigamarol of buying an unlocked phone somewhere else.
(T-Mobile has tried to make that process easier by offering iPhone-ready SIM cards.)
T-Mobile currently has 33 million customers in the U.S., according to Fortune. If it does indeed start carrying the iPhone, Apple will have access to 75% of all cellphone subscribers in the U.S. 98% of American cellphone users in the post-paid market (people who pay for their cellphone service after they have used it), Craig wrote.
He estimates that T-Mobile customers might purchase 4 million iPhones in 2013. That's a drop in the bucket, compared with the 179 million iPhones that Craig already expects to be sold next year.
Although a T-Mobile deal to carry the iPhone wouldn't have a big impact on Apple, it could mean a lot to T-Mobile, which has admitted to losing customers because it doesn't carry Apple's smartphone.
And, of course, it would be a big change for T-Mobile customers as well.
Get to know the bacteria and viruses that call your body home
Microsoft thinks you're getting 'scroogled' by Google [Updated]
Nokia Lumia 920 smartphone sold out on Amazon, supply low at AT&T