iPhone musings

~ 06 June 2007 ~

With the iPhone release date (June 29) now in hand, a few questions spring to mind:

1. At what time in the morning or day before will I be in line to buy one?

2. How high will the bid price reach on eBay on June 30?

3. How long before someone finds a way to unlock the iPhone and the first unlocked one shows up on eBay?

4. Will the iPhone eventually cause an industry shift in advertising not unlike the prescription drug industry, that is the device being advertised directly to the consumer instead of the operator/carrier advertising their network price/features/gimmicks? (In other words, phones being advertised irrespective of network, “Ask your carrier about the iPhone.”)

That’s all.



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1   Olav ~ 06 June 2007

You know, here in Norway, it’s almost always the company making the phone that calls the shots, and not the carriers.

You chose what phone you want, and then what carrier you’d like. Of course, some phones are less expensive because of subsidies from some carrier. But the phone itself is more important.

I’ve never considered using a specific carrier when buying a new cellphone. Which is the way it ought to be. :)

2   Samantha ~ 06 June 2007

My question is:

Will it work while traveling on the DC Metro?

I’m sure there will be lots of bugs to be worked out, but if i can read my my morning mail while in a tunnel under the Potomac, it will be worth every penny.

Right now if you are a Cingular (AT&T) customer you have to fight for service anywhere in the city, especially in the metro. If Cingular doesn’t improve their network, the iPhone is pretty useless to many customers.

3   Michael Dick ~ 06 June 2007

I will be in line as soon as I can be…without going to the extreme of camping outside.

My question is (I have not done much research as far as the costs and requirements to purchase it), but at the end of the commercicals it says:

“Use requires minimum new 2 year activation plan.”

What will happen to those, like me, who have Cingular/AT&T already?

They have listed the prices and those are obviously the prices for a 2 year contract…how much will current customers pay?

4   Cameron Moll ~ 06 June 2007

True, Olav. I should have specified “in the U.S.” on #4.

5   shoobe01@gmail.com ~ 06 June 2007

Even limited to US-only, I still disagree with #4. I see lots of advertising from the manufacturer directly. Aside from the relatively high concept Motorola ads, LG, Sanyo and everyone else buys ad space in major magazines, at least.

Sure, carrier relationships exist, but phone makers certainly have a lot of pull, and a lot of interest in marketing their devices.

6   chuck ~ 06 June 2007

I guess there will always be the early adopters, but I think I’ll be waiting a couple of years to watch the price go down.

In addition to the price of the phone, the price of the plan is what I’m concerned about. With all the internet browsing, iTunes downloading, emailing, etc. I’d probably bankrupt myself after the first month. :)

It’ll be a fun game to watch from the sidelines, though, that’s for sure.

7   Nathan Smith ~ 06 June 2007

What I’m most looking forward to is an eventual (hopefully) standardization around a screen resolution for mobile devices. If the adoption rate is anywhere near that of iPod, it’s a possibility. That would make designing for the mobile web a whole lot easier.

8   Rian ~ 06 June 2007

IMO, mobile phones should be marketed directly to consumers and service companies should fade to background.

I prefer to think of my wireless provider like my water, gas or electric utility or even better yet, my ISP. They provide a service and the device I use to leverage that service should be completely independent of it.

If I want to use a Mac and Firefox I don’t have to make sure it works with my ISP first. Why should it be any different for my mobile phone.

I have been hoping for months that this fundamental recasting of the mobile market will be one of the major results of Apple’s entry into this market.

9   Tim Zheng ~ 06 June 2007

My question is, when would you bring it to work so everyone can poke it?

10   Ed Knittel ~ 06 June 2007

An unlimited data plan is likely to run about $50-$60. I’m basing this on the unlimited data plans that “the new” AT&T has for their Blackberry devices.

As for having an unlocked version: I wouldn’t count on a “legit” unlocked version any time soon. I say legit because you will see ads for unlocked iPhones on eBay the day the phone comes out. Those of course will be scams. The reason that you won’t see an unlocked iPhone any time soon has to do with the availability of the phone. Since the phone is not going to be available outside the US for at least a few months it’s going to be difficult to find a group of people willing to crack open a $400 phone.

Oh, and I’ll be getting in line as early as possible. I’m already a Cingular customer so Michael, et al. what this means is that if you already have an existing contract you’ll have to extend it for 2 years.

11   Charlie Stout ~ 06 June 2007

I’m looking forward to the Big Red Ball widget for the iPhone. I’m saving $599 USD and selling my soul to ATT for that purpose alone.

12   Clifton ~ 06 June 2007

I have heard a surprising number of people make the comment about how expensive the iPhone is and how they’ll just wait for the 3rd generation so they can get a bug-free model.

While I have made similar claims, I fear that once we all get to play with one, technological irrationality will overcome us. At that point, the only remaining question to answer will be, “How much available credit do I have on my American Express Card?”

Cameron, I hereby make a reservation to be the first person to check out your new toy during lunch on June 29th. =)

13   Cameron Moll ~ 06 June 2007

@ shoobe01: Possibly in print, yes. But certainly not TV ads.

14   Lyndon Lloyd ~ 06 June 2007

More importantly, will you be able to use it like a PDA or will Cingular/ATT insist that you can only use their network to surf the Web / download e-mail (and therefore sign up for a $40 data plan) as opposed to being able to do such things, potentially for free, off your/another wireless network?

15   Cameron Moll ~ 06 June 2007

it’s going to be difficult to find a group of people willing to crack open a $400 phone.

I’m certain we’ll see one cracked open on Engadget within days of the release…

16   joe ~ 06 June 2007

I can almost answer #3 by saying, “Apple has an exclusive deal with ATT for the next 2 years.”
Michael Dick: You can call into customer care and inquire about your upgrade elegibility, at which point you may be able to upgrade your phone to something else with a contract extention. You are free to purchase a new phone at any time at full retail price.

/insider knowledge

17   Brandon ~ 06 June 2007

I will be in line the night before, sometime after the store closes. I’m SERIOUS about getting my hands on an iPhone at the first possible moment. From what I’ve heard, each store could get as few as 40 of them, so I plan on being first in line.

I don’t care about unlocking them… I think Apple will release one for use in other countries but the only other major GSM carrier in the US is T-Mobile, which has a much smaller footprint.

Yes, I see a lot of phone companies going to more of a direct marketing approach. I’ve already seen some of this with Samsung Blackjack commercials for Verizon…. even if they are fundamentally flawed.

I DO think this will start a paradigm shift in how manufacturers DESIGN phones. I see new devices coming out in the near future that are easier to use, with more invested in the interface than how thin or cool it looks.

18   Blagoj Srbinov ~ 07 June 2007

On April 9 2007, Apple sold its 100Mth iPod. USA accounts for 4% of the world population, lets say 4M iPods are in the US. That means there are many many people still considering of buying an iPod. Now with the iPhone you get the iPod too, so my opinion is that people will not hesitate to buy the iPhone at all.

1. Since the announcement during the keynote address at the Macworld Conference & Expo on 9 January 2007, Apple stock has gained over 45%, that means people are betting on the iPhone, and that also forecasts the release day.

2. My opinion is that on eBay will go for more than at the stores, high demand=higher price.

3. It will be unlocked the same day, but it will be just a Phone(no i), I think AT&T has the proprietary network setup only. People must switch to AT&T to use all the features available on the iPhone.

4. I totally agree with Olav on this, we should be able to buy a phone we like. Like PCs, you choose Apple because its worth the money you pay and works the best, not because your ISP supports it. I always use the phone I like. Now I use a Nokia N80, before Nokia 6170 and 6670. None of them sold by T-Mobile(USA).

19   Jason Beaird ~ 08 June 2007

I’m excited about the iPhone, but not excited enough to spring for it immediately given the price tag. I have a friend that plans to camp out for one, so I’m sure I’ll get to poke it the next day at work. …at which point I’ll become extremely jealous and start bidding on them at ebay, contributing the the exponential growth of answer #2.

20   Aaron ~ 08 June 2007


The iPhone works on the AT&T data network as well as on a WiFi LAN. So you CAN use it as a data device without the data plan (with only the calling plan). That is, unless AT&T insists that you can only buy the phone when you sign up for a data plan.

Check out Apple’s site for more details about the WiFi, etc.

21   John ~ 08 June 2007

I’ll be in line the night before, atleast by midnight. I bet I won’t be the first one there though. I’m actually an at&t agent(there’s some marketing for you…they kept the lowercase letters to retain the cingular image) and there’s no special treatment for me.

22   Robert ~ 15 June 2007

The iPhone will be on sale at 6PM LOCAL time. So I’m sure that changes a lot of peoples plans.

23   dennis i ~ 19 June 2007

I heard in the news that the Nokia N95 could be a formidable competitor…even though it is significantly more expensive than the iPhone.

Cool gadgets are cool, but I’d rather go for the functionality. For now, even the ‘antique’ T-Mobile MDA fits my requirements (plus you can get it free from some retailers). Reliability is a given, but I just want to:

1. have a phone
2. have access to my email
3. listen to my downloadable audiobooks
4. have decent network coverage

My extended family already has too much invested into T-Mobile…so we’ll probably stick with the service (even though my wife works for at&t).

24   bluderfok ~ 20 June 2007

I will be the first to buy iPhone when it’s on street :), and to dennis i: I have heared that a few AT&T techs have been using iPhone for a while? Is that ture or not?


25   ceviri ~ 01 July 2007

I have heard a surprising number of people make the comment about how expensive the iPhone is and how they’ll just wait for the 3rd generation so they can get a bug-free model.


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