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Report: 3rd-party resellers to carry iPhone 3G in Germany

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 
German buyers of Apple's next-generation iPhone will have their choice of multiple resellers instead of being locked into visiting T-Mobile's stores, according to a German newspaper.

The business paper Wirtschaftswoche claims that sources within Deutsche Telekom, T-Mobile's parent company, have already signed a first deal which will let Gravis sell iPhones attached to a T-Mobile service plan.

This reported expansion also wouldn't be exclusive, the same report says, though it may depend heavily on breaking an earlier deal with a rival. Media Markt and its sister electronics chain Saturn are interested but can't yet sign a deal as their owner MediaSaturnHolding currently has an exclusive deal to sell phones from Debitel, one of T-Mobile's primary opponents in Germany.

Notably, Debitel was briefly an iPhone carrier itself, offering the official unlocked models with a heavy rebate until a legal ruling allowed T-Mobile to drop the unlocked model in favor of its carrier-specific edition.

The multi-party nature of the proposed reseller deals would signify a further loosening of Apple's sales policy. While the US-based company has already agreed to sell through multiple carriers in some countries and is still rumored to be selling iPhone 3G units through third-party resellers in Australia, the German deal is the first to see more than one third-party store reportedly get approval to carry the handset.

It would also belatedly fulfill Gravis' predictions for itself; in mid-2007, the retailer was already declaring that it would carry the iPhone by the end of 2007 despite the absence of any official word from Apple or T-Mobile. The November launch of the original iPhone in Germany saw its sales limited to official T-Mobile shops and without any Gravis deal in sight.

Apple and T-Mobile alike have so far remained silent on the latest claims.
post #2 of 16
Does that mean that they will offer different deals that the pathetic ones that T-Mobile are offering right now? Unlikely, so who really cares?

I haven't seen a news story on this so far, so I thought I'd mention that Germany has by far the worse iPhone deal released world wide so far. 49 euros (38 pounds or $76US) for 100 minutes, 40 texts and "unlimited" data which after 300mb slows down to 64kbit/s down and 16kbit/up, all on a 24 month contract!

Feel free to challenge that..
post #3 of 16
yes, the tarifs are awful - awful beyond grasp
that's why i'm running my unlocked iPhone 2G on o2 here in germany...
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post #4 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

still rumored to be selling iPhone 3G units through third-party resellers in Australia

What..... so we won't have only one shop in Australia that sells iPhones?!?

That's lucky for most of the population
post #5 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by saschke View Post

yes, the tarifs are awful - awful beyond grasp
that's why i'm running my unlocked iPhone 2G on o2 here in germany...

They problem is, the tariffs in general at appalling in Germany. Even if I bought an unlocked one, I don't believe I could do better than the standard t-mobile iphone tariffs. If you know of a way for 50 euros a month I can get truly unlimited or say 5G data, with more than 100 minutes and 40 texts, let me know.

The market here is just completely overpriced and with no competition on the iPhone, they are not going to come down soon.
post #6 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hutcho View Post

I haven't seen a news story on this so far, so I thought I'd mention that Germany has by far the worse iPhone deal released world wide so far.

how do you figure? i'm not happy having to switch to T-Mobile myself, mind you, but the EUR29 tariff sounds fair - and certainly below what i hear people discussing as minimum cost in the US. Mind you the $30 plan in the US includes *only* data, from what i understand and is needed on top of an actual vice plan. On the last episode if MacBreak Weekly, it was said to expect US$80 to US$90 a month on the AT&T iPhone 3G deal.

the T-Mobile deal sounds very good, in comparison to that, imho,
post #7 of 16
It's hard to compare the 29 euro deal, because in other countries the deals start higher than this. That said, what they get for just a small amount more in astounding.

I guess in the US, they don't have a deal for only around $50 (29 euros), but the deal they have for $70 ($30 data + $40 talk) is substantially better.

Further to that, check out what the UK get for 45 euros - truly unlimited data, only 18 month contract, 600 minutes, 500 texts and the phone for around 125 euros.

Compare that to Germany, where you get 300mb data at fast speeds, 24 month contract, 100 minutes and only 40 texts with a iPhone price of 169 euros. All this for 5 euros more a month!
post #8 of 16
Comparing the U.S. and German rate plans for the iPhone is a little bit like comparing apples to oranges. Why? Don't forget that in Germany, all incoming calls are FREE. In the U.S., all incoming calls count as airtime minutes. So, a $30 voice plan with 100 minutes in Germany actually allows unlimited minutes of incoming calls (along with 100 minutes of outgoing calls). In the U.S., 300 minutes is 300 minutes, period.

There's also the standard U.S. plan feature of unlimited free mobile-to-mobile minutes (on same carrier, of course), which may not be offered on a plan in Germany.

Bottom line: when comparing plans in different countries, you have to pay attention to every detail.
post #9 of 16
Well, a few notes:

Debitel is not a "primary opponent" of T-Mobile. Debitel re-sells mobile contracts from all major providers, including T-Mobile. The problem here is that T-Mobile and Apple have excluded these resellers (which have a huge customer base, even among business users, as they normally offer more flexibility and in some cases better support than the original providers) from everything iPhone. I assume this will be re-thought once the initial run for the 3G model has calmed down, most likely for early 2009.

Having Gravis (Germany's biggest Apple reseller) and other retail outlets that have at least some computer know-how resell the T-Mobile iPhone and tariffs is no big news (they resell other Telekom products/services already) - same conditions, same tariffs and the support remains with T-Mobile anyhow. The only difference is, that people will (in theory) have a chance to get better pre-sales support, as the the staff in the T-Mobile shops has no knowledge and no motivation at all. Ask them a simple question about device syncing, supported media formats, whatever and you can see how they are lost instantly. Gravis knows Apple computers, iPods and software inside out - it's an obvious choice.
post #10 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by slicedbread View Post

Comparing the U.S. and German rate plans for the iPhone is a little bit like comparing apples to oranges. Why? Don't forget that in Germany, all incoming calls are FREE. In the U.S., all incoming calls count as airtime minutes. So, a $30 voice plan with 100 minutes in Germany actually allows unlimited minutes of incoming calls (along with 100 minutes of outgoing calls). In the U.S., 300 minutes is 300 minutes, period.

There's also the standard U.S. plan feature of unlimited free mobile-to-mobile minutes (on same carrier, of course), which may not be offered on a plan in Germany.

Bottom line: when comparing plans in different countries, you have to pay attention to every detail.

I never understood why the US carriers charge you for incoming minutes. It's the only nation I know of that charges for incoming minutes, everywhere else includes them for free. Surely capitalist principles would demonstrate that the system used in the rest of the world has enabled greater market penetration to the point that in some EU nations there are more handsets than users.

And yet the US sticks to its unique, and sucky, charging for incoming minutes. Very odd.
post #11 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by NanoAkron View Post

It's the only nation I know of that charges for incoming minutes, everywhere else includes them for free.

That's not quite the whole story. All receiving carriers collect a certain fee from the originating carrier and these charges are included in all tariff calculations. You do pay for them, you just do not have to count them (and people that receive a lot of calls and do not call out frequently benefit). The downside is that people calling out a lot actually pay extra for those only receiving calls.
post #12 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by NanoAkron View Post

I never understood why the US carriers charge you for incoming minutes. It's the only nation I know of that charges for incoming minutes, everywhere else includes them for free. Surely capitalist principles would demonstrate that the system used in the rest of the world has enabled greater market penetration to the point that in some EU nations there are more handsets than users.

And yet the US sticks to its unique, and sucky, charging for incoming minutes. Very odd.

Europe is thinking about moving towards the US system.

http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/7148e92c-3...0779fd2ac.html

It doesn't matter whether they charge you incoming calls or not --- as long as your out of pocket expense is lower,

Europe's mobile penetration rate is a joke --- basically every country has over 100% penetration rate. What it really means is that rates are too high so they all have to carry multiple SIM's. For example, if Italy migrates to the US system --- you look at the person on your left and the person on your right, one out of the 3 people decides to not carry a cell phone anymore with the US system, you still have 100% penetration rate (Italy has 150% penetration rate right now).
post #13 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by slicedbread View Post

There's also the standard U.S. plan feature of unlimited free mobile-to-mobile minutes (on same carrier, of course), which may not be offered on a plan in Germany.

Actually, I did forget to mention that on the German plan, there are free weekend calls within the same network and to land lines. That makes the deal somewhat sweeter, but none the less still worse in my opinion that other deals out there, especially compared to the UK's deal.

Quote:
Originally Posted by NanoAkron View Post

And yet the US sticks to its unique, and sucky, charging for incoming minutes. Very odd.

They also use feet and inches and 110v for electricity, both of which are outdated and have been replaced in the rest of the world with better systems. That's just the way it is.

That said, I think some people are forgetting one point. Even though you might have to pay for incoming calls in the US, a mobile phone there is no different than a land line phone - even the number just looks like a land line phone number and it often has the same area code as where you live (I believe you can choose this when signing up).

This means that it is often free to call mobiles (you can call them for free for example from anywhere in the world using voipcheap.com).

In other countries where you don't pay for incoming calls, rates are much higher to call mobiles than land lines. For example, here in Germany I can call any land line for free in the whole country, but it costs aruond 17c a minute to call a mobile.

Lets not forget also that in Europe, you do indeed start paying for your incoming calls as soon as you cross into another country, which could arguably be compared to crossing a state line in America. I'm just 1 hour away from the Austrian border, and when I cross I start paying 25c (40c US) per minute, and almost double that if I make a call! And these are the reduced rates that were forced on providers by the EU not that long ago. Before that I used to pay up to 2 euros ($3) a minute!
post #14 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hutcho View Post

Does that mean that they will offer different deals that the pathetic ones that T-Mobile are offering right now? Unlikely, so who really cares?

I haven't seen a news story on this so far, so I thought I'd mention that Germany has by far the worse iPhone deal released world wide so far. 49 euros (38 pounds or $76US) for 100 minutes, 40 texts and "unlimited" data which after 300mb slows down to 64kbit/s down and 16kbit/up, all on a 24 month contract!

Feel free to challenge that..

hugo: if you critize tmobile germany you have to critize all german cell phone carriers... and some many publications have done a side by side comp[arison of german plans, in those conparisons the tmobile iphone plans actually were quite good! since the include generous data plans and a wifi hotspot flat for all 8500 tmobile germany hotspots...

the 89 iphone plan which includes a 1000min talk time, EDGE/3G data flat rate and wifi flatrate is pretty decent!
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post #15 of 16
You are right - it's more a rant about the German mobile prices on the whole. For Germany, the iPhone deals are quite good, but compare them to the UK for example and they are pathetic. That was my point.
post #16 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hutcho View Post

You are right - it's more a rant about the German mobile prices on the whole. For Germany, the iPhone deals are quite good, but compare them to the UK for example and they are pathetic. That was my point.

i hear you...
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