Meet the US Carrier That Turned Down the iPhone

FierceWireless is reporting that Mary Dillon, the CEO of US Cellular, told investors this morning that the nation’s 6th largest wireless carrier was recently given the chance to carry Apple’s hit smartphone. And the strange thing is, they turned it down.

With companies like T-Mobile chomping at the bit to carry the iPhone, it’s interesting that US Cellular passed on the opportunity. Especially since other CEOs, like Sprint’s Dan Hesse, see the handset as the number one reason why folks switch to other carriers…

So why did Dillon pass on the iPhone? She told shareholders that Apple’s “terms were unacceptable from a risk and profitability standpoint.” She also made sure to note that the potential for extra network traffic was not a factor in the decision.

US Cellular isn’t the first carrier to turn away the popular smartphone due to Apple’s expensive terms. A few days ago a Czech-based operator made headlines for passing on Apple’s handset for similar reasons. Apparently carrying the iPhone can be a costly endeavor.

Sprint recently shelled out a cool $20 billion in cash to finally become an iPhone partner, and the company is rumored to be upside-down in the deal until 2014. The carrier also claimed that Apple’s handset subsidies are $200 higher than other manufacturers.

So that’s how Apple garners half of the entire mobile industry’s profits.