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> If Google can do that ( https://fi.google.com ) why can't Apple?

I think Apple planned (still is?) to become a carrier as part of their eSIM rollout, but the carriers who sell a lot of their phones are not so welcoming to carrying a competing carriers products.

If Apple can move iDevice sales to their own stores to a higher degree this is more likely to happen.

I feel like Apple can just have a popup that says "Verizon has no service here. AppleNet has 4 bars service. Do you want to connect to AppleNet instead($35 per month)?".

Click 'Yes' and you're subscribed, billed to your Apple account just like any other in-app subscription, and only used when your main provider has no service or you have no SIM inserted.

Yep. But with that functionality it could also be: Turn iPhone on, get asked the same, never worry about a separate carrier, ever.

Carriers don't want that.

Apple has shown that they can dictate whatever terms they want to carriers before. Them not being able to do so in this particular instance doesn't make sense.

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