According to Spanish site CanalPDA.com (translated) in an interview with Apple's VP of Mobile Platforms and Services business unit Albert Slope, Apple is lining up their ducks to be a new mobile carrier.
"creating our own mobile carrier is the next logical step in our strategy of providing the Apple experience to the users of our products. We believe that existing carriers are not offering the flexibility nor the performance consumers deserve, so we have decided to move forward, providing cellphone users a full, personal communications and information environment, with the user-friendliness that has become synonymous with Apple's products and services"
"On the other hand", says Slope, "the sucess achieved by the iTunes Music Store has shown us the way to go: by selling songs to consumers at $0.99 apiece, we have accumulated a valuable expertise that will be most useful for billing them talking minutes".
According to the article, Apple's new mobile carrier will start operating as a MVNO (Mobile Virtual Network Operator), using existing infrastructure to build a new brand.[Update]: This story has been reported to be a joke.