I am not sure I can call it a network limitation anymore, when over 90% of the models of LTE phones Verizon has carried have that feature. You are technically correct, but it doesn't feel right, given the context.
The iphone is sold to 100's of GSM networks that have been able to do that for years. Just for 2 CDMA carriers to sacrifice size and battery life maybe is not worth it to Apple until voice over LTE is implemented.
Verizon (and Sprint, and Cricket, and soon US Cellular) already sell iPhones that differ a bit from those sold elsewhere. Why not add a third antenna like Samsung, HTC, Motorola, LG, and Pantech have done? It wouldn't effect the many GSM versions.
VZW has stated VoLTE won't be up for another year or so. This is because all sites don't have LTE up. To rival the reliability of their 1x voice network now, VZW has to deploy LTE antennas on many more towers. This isn't happening in a few months. Plus lets not forget the current generation of Snapdragon SoCs don't support VoLTE yet.Yep verzion VoLTE should have been completed by now. Mabey by the end of the summer.
Yes, it would likely decrease battery life, but solely on this iPhone 5's that come with that third antenna...