NEW YORK (
) -- Bullish, but not banking on the
(VZ - Get Report)
iPhone, JPMorgan jacked up
(AAPL - Get Report)
price target to $400 Thursday.
The research note comes after
yet another report
that Apple is ending its iPhone exclusivity with
(T - Get Report)
and preparing to launch sales of the iconic device at No. 1 mobile shop Verizon early next year.
In a note titled "Plenty of Growth Left," JPMorgan analyst Mark Moskowitz said the Verizon iPhone will boost Apple's earnings 11% annually, or $2 a share. But Moskowitz does not base his financial projections or his $400 price target on the possibility of the iPhone going to Verizon. Instead, Moskowitz is more jazzed about the current strength of iPhone and iPad sales this year.
>>Who Owns Apple?:
The most recent report from the
Wall Street Journal
Wednesday calls for a CDMA iPhone using a
chip, which should sound
familiar to Verizon iPhone observers
. The ongoing saga of whether the iPhone will go to Verizon has been one of
tech's great debates
Verizon's notoriously uncompromising stance on what devices and services it will support on its network has long be thought to be the barrier to Apple's equally determined approach to control all aspects of its products.
Skeptics continue to argue that Verizon, which is enjoying tremendous success with its
(GOOG - Get Report)
Android phones from
, will pass on the 3G version of the iPhone and more likely wait for a 4G version later in 2011 or 2012.
Asked Thursday for an update on what the company was saying about the Apple iPhone, a Verizon rep said: "Not a thing."
Verizon and Apple shares were both up less than 1% in early trading Thursday.
--Written by Scott Moritz in New York.
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