3G iPhone: What it might Really Cost
The new 3G iPhone may seem cheaper at the onset, but the catch here is the bundled plan that goes along with it. Gizmodo has come up with a comparative table of what the new iPhone will really cost you on an AT&T plan. Surpisingly (or not), it’s actually more expensive than the first one albeit just being a hundred or so despite having a lower unit selling price. On the local front, although nothing’s certain yet, Yugatech via a reliable source has come up with the possible pricing scheme for the iPhone. It comes as no surprise that a 2-year lock-in period is required and higher end plans will have the privilege of getting the Apple mobile phone at a cheaper price (if not free), but the kicker here is that it’s only the 8GB model being discussed here. G-Max 3500 iPhone 3G Initial Fee: Php9,995 Monthly Fee: Php3,500 Free Text: 650 Free Calls: 750 mins. Globe to Globe: Php3.50/minute Globe to Non-Globe: Php4.50/minute Excess SMS Rates: Php0.50/text Globe Platinum 5000 iPhone 3G Initial Fee: FREE Monthly Fee: Php5,000 Free Text: 650 Free Calls: 1,100 mins. Globe to Globe: Php3.50/minute Globe to Non-Globe: Php4.50/minute Excess SMS Rates: Php0.50/text If you do the math, you’ll actually be spending P 93,995.00 for an 8GB iPhone on the G-Max 3500 plan, and P 120,000.00 on the Platinum spread over two years. The prepaid kit isn't looking too enticing either as Vodafone's unit-only price of the iPhone gives us a hint into the possible price range in the local market. Unfortunately, Apple is also implementing a new mandatory in-store activation policy which means you'd have to go to authorized telco distributors to have it activated. This greatly reduces the chances of getting an iPhone in the black market at a cheaper price. Sheesh! The 3G iPhone is starting to look more less-affordable by the minute. September is the supposed roll-out date of these new iPhone-based plans so by then, we can probably get a clearer picture of what it’ll really cost us. The iPhone is undeniably a hot commodity, but I’m hoping (probably against all odds) that Globe or any telco for that manner will not use it to bait consumers into getting plans that just aren’t worth it. After all, current plans put a premium on SMS and calls while the biggest asset the iPhone its data usage. Telcos should offer a more impressive data plans that not only is consumer-friendly, but reliable and sound as well. With the entry of the iPhone into the local market, now is the perfect opportunity to push for data plans which has taken a back seat to cheaper call and text rates primarily due to the lack of a device that can truly maximize the usage of such a service. This, in turn, will be an added source of revenue considering how under-used it has been for the last couple of years. I’m keeping my fingers crossed that Globe officials will realize this and make a concerted effort to improve on the existing 3G/data usage scheme and make the iPhone more affordable, not just for the well-off crowd, but more so for the greater majority. After all, isn’t it Steve’s dream to have everyone use the iPhone? UPDATE: The official prices are out already. Read more here.