iPhone 4Speculation has been around for years about when AT&T would lose the exclusive rights to the iPhone. It has been presumed that once that happens, Verizon is next in line to get the popular gadget. It seems that it may be happening sooner than anticipated.

According to TechCrunch, sources say that there have been millions of CDMA chipsets ordered from Qualcomm. These chips are the wireless technology that Verizon uses on its phones.  A few months ago a rumor had circulated that Qualcomm had acquired a deal to provide chips to the company, and it appears to have been true.

AT&T has been preparing as well. Recently it used a substantial portion of its SEC filing to assure that it would indeed be okay without exclusive rights to the iPhone.

The sources were not named, but TechCrunch labels them as “knowledgeable”. This would indicate they have intimate knowledge from Apple or Qualcomm or both.

Verizon users are eagerly awaiting the iPhone. As many as half the users asked said they would ditch current phones for the new iPhone if it became available, according to a recent survey.

There was no indication of when the iPhone might be available on the Verizon network.