Originally Posted by Tallest Skil
So how are all these 12 year olds affording $70 a month for an iPhone, anyway? The iPod touch still has a huge market, and always will.
They aren't. The parents can also put their old iPhones on prepaid plans and not to be an ass, but a lot of the kids don't seem to mind Android which is also much more available on prepaid plans. The nature of the market that helped bring about the iPod Touch has completely changed. Kids used to have their "texting" cell phone but now they want an iPhone/Android that is passed down or other providers don't mind offering inexpensive new Android phones. When Samsung lost their case to Apple, the most profitable model they sold was a prepaid Android phone here in the U.S.
Phones like this are available for $35-45 a month depending upon the provider. PagePlus has a very nice $30/$55 plan that I've seen loads of older Android phones go on. I've got an iPhone 3GS on a plan with Airvoice for $10 a month that will probably be going to one of my boys for Christmas. Used iPhones and especially used Androids are going for less than the new iPod which starts with year old technology. The point is that year old technology in smart phones has often depreciated in price down to $300 or less. I've also heard plenty of younger (than me) folks mention the T-mobile plans which start at $30.
You are right that many won't spring for full plans and brand new phones but the pace of progress has been so fast that even older technology is still adequate. We have to believe this because that is what Apple is still selling in the iPod Touch and what they just introduced in the "brand new" iPad Mini.
Originally Posted by SmileyDude
The thing about the 12 year olds with iPhones is that it's a lot cheaper than it first appears. First off, a 12 year old with an iPhone probably also has a family. And that means that they will probably have an existing family plan that can be used. That brings down the cost of additional iPhones -- on AT&T, it would be $30/month to add an additional iPhone with 300MB data plan, for example.
The other thing is that most parents probably don't go out and buy their 12 year old an iPhone new. Instead, they can hand down that iPhone 4 that isn't being used anymore because mom and dad got new iPhones. That also saves some money over the iPod touch which would cost a minimum of $200 to buy new.
If that 12 year old is already carrying around a cell phone for some other reason, the delta between a free feature phone and a hand me down iPhone is now $20/month on AT&T. If you assume that the iPod touch is going to last for about 2 years, that means the iPhone is costing an additional $40 over 2 years. That is not anywhere near the $70/month that was being quoted above.
It can be even less than that if the parents simply find a way not to add data. There are all manner of folks on Craigslist advertising services for folks that are not tech savvy with regard to jailbreaking, flashing, etc. We are assuming the kids need data plans. Many parents might just be handing them a SIM and an older phone and we adults are wondering why all the kids are at Starbucks and McDonalds after school.
Originally Posted by hillstones
What a load of crap. iPhones are not "free". They cost about $2,000 with their two year contract. The iPod Touch is the most popular selling iPod. Many people prefer the iPod Touch because there is no monthly fee. iPod Touches are not solely used by children, as you Apple Fanbois would like to believe. Many adults use them as well because they don't want to pay an expensive monthly fee for a phone, when they can find a cell phone for much less. So the iPod Touch provides a nice alternative.
The iPad Mini won't cannibalize the iPod Touch because they are not the same. The iPod Touch is far more portable and easy to take with you. The iPad and iPad mini, not so much.
The iPod Classic does not need any updates. It serves one purpose, to carry large libraries. That is why Apple still sells it.
You are 100% right that it does provide a nice and also inexpensive alternative. The reality is that Apple hasn't seemed much interested in inexpensive alternatives the last couple years. Prices are drifting up and each time we are told the design and specs warrant the increase and they will forgo the cheaper customers.
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil
Originally Posted by TheOtherGeoff
35 a month (9.99 plus a $25 data plan on top of parents phone) is the typical cost... but yes, it's a huge uplift.
I'm seeing $40 for every phone on top of $60.
Originally Posted by Shameer Mulji
these 12 year olds will get iPad minis instead.
Different device, different uses, different market.
Straight Talk is $45. T-mobile is $30. Airvoice can be as cheap as $10. Both my boys have smartphones on PagePlus right now for $12 a month. They don't get unlimited everything but they do get a device that does more than an iPod which can only use wifi. Both of them still own iPod's though because we are a Apple family. However both have discussed selling their iPods or trying to get down to one device even with limited service. They are no different than the adults there. Less to charge and less in the pocket.