Originally Posted by paxman
-- Top of the line - ip4
-- lower price - ip3gs (I have seen it for $0.-) - Or were you thinking Apple will bring out a BRAND NEW lower cost model?
I am thinking a new low-cost model -- so there is some product differentiation, lower manufacturing costs, and higher manufacturing capacity.
Where I don't have any clue is how/what Apple determines the minimum capabilities and capacities for a low-cost model.
Originally Posted by Dick Applebaum
2) Make some creative package deals with the carriers
-- less expensive family plan
-- shared data
-- more- flexible contracts
-- better warranty replacement
-- easier, less-expensive 12 or 18 month upgrade
-- One-stop shopping
Isn't that all up to the carriers?
It always has been -- but that doesn't mean it cannot change.
Remember how ATT changed VoiceMail to cater to the original iPhone.
I believe Apple has more negotiating power with the carriers than any single competitor.
I believe Apple has some exclusive offerings (planned and currently available) that give it great negotiating power:
For example Apple's online and Stick and Stucco stores. Currently, when you go to upgrade to a new iPhone you are given a flat Yes or No ($299 vs $499), based on your contract date. How about Apple suggests to the carrier: "Why don't we find a way in Apple Stores (supported by you the carrier) to give the customer what he wants -- prorate the contract, eliminate ETFs, and encourage sign-up and hand-me-down
of the older model as a working iPhone
(instead of a SIMless iPhone serving as an iPod Touch).
So, the above customer pays, maybe, $399 and gives the older model to his child.
So, the customer who wants to buy now, is given a way to do so -- rather than being told: "No iPhone for you today -- you must wait".
That's just Sales 101.
Also, Apple has a lot of services (and presumably much more coming) that consume bandwidth -- exactly what the carriers are selling and making profits on. Apple could negotiate with the carriers to provide more of these services in exchange for reduced data charges and higher (or eliminated) caps.
As an illustration:
Apple: Our new iPhone Nano only has 8 GB SDD, so we want to encourage users to redownload
songs and apps from the iTunes stores whenever needed -- over 3G
as well as WiFi. How about we, Apple, reimburse you, the carrier, $.01 for each song and $.05 for each app our customers download over your 3G.
Now, there's a snowball's chance that the above would happen -- but there are things that Apple can do for the carriers to the benefit of customers, carriers and Apple, alike.
iCloud will only reduce the storage capacity requirement. But I am not sure to what extent. The way I see it iCloud is more about (multiple) device and content management, and about making future purchase decision lean towards Apple, whether that be a computer, laptop, tablet or smartphone, and less about catering to new customers on a limited budget.
I agree... what we know about iCloud today. But, if that's all there is, I doubt that Apple would have bothered. iCloud is currently WiFi only -- but I suspect that plans are in place for cell radio support.
Also what about streaming content -- I suspect we will see that within a year after the iCloud roll out.