3G uses a different protocol to EDGE, so one reason for the delays in the iPhone being released here is that it seems unlikely many of the networks will want to support EDGE. HSDPA is advanced technology, but not EDGE.
The issue here is that the US lags Europe and Asia in mobile phone technology so Apple has pitched its device to the lowest common denominator – the US market. While I am sure PR departments can convince naive journalists at newspapers to print nonsense, whether the networks will want to do so, and risk confusing their existing customer base as to the differences between EDGE and 3G or simply wait until Apple can produce a 3G phone must be a different question. The problem for Apple is that Nokia and HTC are not likely to wait around to let them capitalize on any perceived technical advantages to their UI.