I don't think Maitre knows the market he is talking about. The latest greatest tech devices are seen as status symbols and the desire to own them is only partly to do with what they can do. A lot of Asian cultures have quite a thing for 'face'.
I am not entirely sure Samsung doesn't have a strategy that involves replacing Android with Tizen at some point, so it might not necessarily be the cheapie he is looking for.
I think Apple should wait for their cash reserves to grow a bit then buy Vodafone.
If you kill the telecoms, who will provide the data? You can fix data prices, but someone needs to provide it. Why don't you just suggest that legislation be passed to force Apple and all other companies to sell their products at cost + 5%?
A note on status symbols, US is not very different from Asia in this regard; I'd say Europe (and probably Canada and Australia) are on the opposite end of the spectrum.
As to telco's, allow me to paraphrase a great movie line, the greatest trick the telecoms ever pulled was convincing the world we need data to use our smartphones. Here are my arguments:
First, we have WiFi, and for many applications it is still the only option (high-quality streaming, FaceTime); some of us have access to WiFi for >95% of our time and the other 5% are often spent either driving or commuting underground. The biggest use for data on the road is maps, and luckily we have OpenStreet so that we don't have to rely on Google's maps which, for well known reasons (spying), are only accessible online.
Second, a smartphone is so much more than a portable browser: it's a music player (most common use I believe), it's a camera (probably tied with music), it's a gaming device (!!!), it's a personal organizer, it's a book reader. All this works fine without constant data connection.
Third, a small amount of data from the carrier can go a long way if used judiciously (e-mail, dedicated apps for web access). As long as the phone doesn't update software over the air, doesn't spy on our usage habits (OEM spyware is long gone from my phone at the click of a button), and doesn't feed us with useless marketing (my hosts file remaps every ad server I've ever come across to 127.0.0.1).
So yeah, people will always want to buy nice hardware, but don't be surprised that they may refrain from guzzling mobile data...