The 411: My son is 14 and is not ready for having a $30/month data plan under contract. However, he is ready (we want to give him) and new iPod Touch to replace the aged one I gave him a few years ago.
I found a near new VZW iPhone 4 for the same price as a new Touch. So I would like to buy it and let him use it as a Touch, but if over th enext year he is ready, or VZW offers a lower priced plan we could then activate. If not, he has the same decvice as the Touch.
Logic would say that it should activate as a Touch just like an iPod but the AT&T versions require a sim card, even if inactive, in the iPhone to connect with iTunes.
I have not been able to find any answers in a VZW store or online.
I can't say for sure if it will but I don`t see why it wouldn`t. Once connected via wifi it`s independent of Verizon`s 3g service. I have a Motorola droid x that I only use on wifi. No 3g service at all. Kinda of an idroid. Hopefully someone can better answer your question.
May I add that with a used iphone not purchased from Verizon you wouldn`t have to sign a contract to add a data plan for him. I purchased a used smartphone for my son and added him to our plan with the stipulation that he needs to in some way earn the added features. I.e.. Chores. If he didn`t keep his end of the bargain I could easily either suspend his line or terminate it without penalty.
2 of my kids use our old iphones(3g) as an itouch, they have no problems. It just always shows no service at the top - but they can use everything else as usual, all apps, camera, ipod, wifi. They connect to itunes and use all the same functions, update software, etc. It works exactly as my other 2 kids itouches!
A friend of mine gave her niece her iPhone 4 to use as an iPod after she upgraded to a different device...it works fine and it does not have to have the sim card to access iTunes...since iTunes access can only happen over WiFi just as it would on an iPod Touch. I don't know anyone to date that has an iPhone 4 on VZW that isn't actually using it activated but it's safe to assume that the same would be true with it...especially considering that the iPhone 4 on VZW does not have a sim card like the 4s does.