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Details emerge of iPhone 3G international launch

post #1 of 39
Thread Starter 
Steve Jobs announced at WWDC that the new iPhone 3G would launch simultaneously in 22 countries on July 11 and expand to at least 70 countries by the end of 2008. What wasn't revealed was the unit and service pricing details for mobile carriers outside of AT&T in the US. Jobs also didn't brag up the hardball plan deals he forced upon carriers or his efforts to recreate a spectacular launch event internationally.

Weak Dollar, Strong Pricing

AppleInsider has learned that, somewhat unsurprisingly, the iPhone 3G will be more expensive in parts of Europe relative to the US when compared in US dollars. While the new model was publicly announced with a dramatic $199 price tag along with a two year service plan from AT&T here in the US, sources familiar with the details of Apple's European mobile carrier partners have indicated that the new iPhone will be priced at 199 Euros in parts of Europe, like Spain.

Thanks to the weak US dollar, at current exchange rates that works out to a little more than $310 in US currency. That pricing premium is nothing new, as Apple's Mac and iPod products in Europe are commonly priced the same in Euros as identical models of Apple's American products are in US dollars, making them a bit more than 50% more expensive outside the US.

Apple is not unique in this type of international pricing. Other American consumer electronics products have a similar price premium in Europe despite the strength of the Euro to the US dollar. And across the board, European prices for everything from food to clothing are similarly about the same in Euros as they are in dollars in the US, in part because EU countries add tax into the advertised price, while states that charge sales tax in the US add it on top.

The end result is that travel to Europe is very expensive for Americans and conversely, Europeans can bargain hunt in the US with a highly favorable exchange rate. That reality has caused a significant number of Europeans to buy their iPhones while visiting New York or San Francisco, causing inventory shortages in the US while Apple's European iPhone retail partners saw a more tepid demand.

The Man with the Plan

Apple is apparently taking international exchange rate pricing pressures into consideration in the iPhone 3G rollout, requiring that domestic iPhone purchases be activated with AT&T in the store at the time of sale. This will make it unattractively expensive for Europeans to buy iPhones in the US for export.

Now that Apple has "signed, sealed and delivered" iPhone distribution contracts with mobile providers in nearly every major market, the company doesn't have to leave the door open to grey market unlock scalpers, who have helped sell a significant percentage of iPhones to international users. The article "Does the iPhone Shortage Herald an Impending 3G Release? Probably Not" profiled Apple's inventory challenges and the unlocked iPhones being sold for more than $730 in Bangkok.

While pundits fretted over "missing iPhones" supposedly lost to a crisis of overseas unlocking, Apple executives expressed the idea on several occasions that unlocked phone sales were not a problem for the company and only indicated strong demand for the iPhone overseas. Now that Apple has official distribution deals internationally, it has no need to allow grey market sales.

Flat Rate or No Date

iPhone sales quickly grew to become the second largest selling phone platform in the US, but also rose to the top web browsing client in America. Web server tracking logs also indicate extremely broad distribution of the iPhone worldwide, a factor that no doubt helped Apple sell foreign providers on signing up to offer the iPhone.

Sources close to Telefonica, Apple's Spanish iPhone partner, indicate that Jobs leveraged that worldwide iPhone demand to push mobile providers to offer a flat data rate, something that many international telcos were loath to do. They would prefer to sell data by the kilobit, which not only adds up to bigger bills but is also easier to load balance on the network.

Since Apple doesn't make a per-kilobit commission, it would rather have its customers on a flat rate than encourages data use and shows off the differentiation of the iPhone as a mobile web browser and email device. While individual plans in every launch country have not yet been officially released, sources indicate Apple had demanded all international carriers offer a flat rate for unlimited data, although those plans are often more expensive than AT&T's iPhone deal in the US, perhaps as high as 90 Euros per month.

The Big Launch, Part Two

After orchestrating a media circus at last year's iPhone launch that involved long lines of giddy customers, dramatic retail store closings that involved an interior makeover, and Disneyland-style retail employee theatrics to welcome buyers, Apple appears to be aiming to top its own record for the most spectacular launch of a consumer electronics product.

In Spain, Telefonica's office building in the shopping mecca of Madrid's Gran Via is getting quietly rebuilt in a first floor makeover planned around the July 11 launch of the iPhone 3G. Windows displays have been gutted in the prime retail space, and its animated video screen signage is not yet functional (below). Apple is withholding any comment on launch events, apparently in an effort to prevent the story from getting old before the launch itself occurs.



With that launch now just two weeks away, Telefonica and Apple's other international partners are scrambling to set up a flawlessly executed media extravaganza set to explode just prior to the iPhone 3G going on sale.

You Want WiFi With That?

Telefonica is also rolling out WiFi hotspots that offer iPhone users a custom web page to log in using their mobile number (below). This echos the deal between AT&T and Starbucks to offer iPhone users free WiFi access in the US, a deal that was prematurely advertised, then backtracked upon in a bungled rollout that appears to have been originally intended for embargo until the iPhone 3G launch.

When attempting to connect to Telefonica's WiFi public hotspots in train stations and other locations, existing iPhone users in Spain are presented with the option of logging in with their phone number to access their account. However, there are no current iPhone service plans being offered by Telefonica or its Movistar mobile brand in Spain.

The web page text reads:

"Beinvenido a la pagina de Registro inicial de su iPhone movistar en el servicio Zona WiFi de Telefonica. Por favor, indroduzca su numero de telefono. Di los datos con correctos, empezara a navegar immediatamente y no se la requeriran en futuros accesos. Si no tiene contractado el servicio iPhone Movistar y quiere accedar al serviceo Zona WiFi de Telefonica, pulse aqui."

In English: "Welcome to the initial registration page for Telefonica Movistar WiFi. Please enter your phone number. If the information is correct, you will be able to browse immediately and not require future access. If you do not have a Movistar iPhone service contract and want to access Telefonica Movistar WiFi, click here."



The combination of a flat rate mobile data plan and free access to public WiFi hotspots run by Apple's partners will help position the iPhone as more than a basic smartphone, targeting its value as wireless mobile Internet platform. The mounting details of Apple's international launch of the iPhone 3G also calls to mind Bill Gates' 2003 email (unearthed by Todd Bishop of the Seattle PI and recently cited by the Daring Fireball) referencing the planning Apple invested in setting up the original iTunes Store. "Steve Jobs’s ability to focus in on a few things that count, get people who get user interface right and market things as revolutionary are amazing things," Gates wrote.
post #2 of 39
Unfortunately, in Croatia there is no way we will be offered affordable flat rate. It will probably be 100 EUR!!!!!!!!!!!! Hate this!
post #3 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by angevil View Post

Unfortunately, in Croatia there is no way we will be offered affordable flat rate. It will probably be 100 EUR!!!!!!!!!!!! Hate this!

Why don't you get an unlocked phone and subscribe to VIP. At 191Kn ($US42) for 3 Gigabytes or 91Kn for 1Gig its as flat rate as it gets (plus you need a voice plan).

I don't think there is an official distributor for iPhones in Croatia.
post #4 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by angevil View Post

Unfortunately, in Croatia there is no way we will be offered affordable flat rate. It will probably be 100 EUR!!!!!!!!!!!! Hate this!

Also, no matter where you live in the world, there is the fact that "unlimited data" is actually a lie in most cases. While it would be simple false advertising in any other business, the "unlimited data" most carriers advertise is anything but. In my country there are three different-sized "unlimited data" options offered by the monopolist carrier, none of which are actually "unlimited."

Add the various "system access fees" and so-called "taxes" on top and in most countries, (definitely in mine), a "one-price" unlimited data package on top of a "one-price" talk package is actually about 30% to 40% more than the stated costs in the ads and will leave you with a bill that looks like a ten page excel spreadsheet. Good luck trying to afford it, or even figuring out where the money went and how you could reduce the costs.

It's a scam by any other name. Rogers in Canada is already hinting at a $30 data package for the iPhone, but "$30 unlimited data" will still mean that you are going to be paying closer to $100 a month for phone service. Outrageous.
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post #5 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by Virgil-TB2 View Post

Also, no matter where you live in the world, there is the fact that "unlimited data" is actually a lie in most cases. While it would be simple false advertising in any other business, the "unlimited data" most carriers advertise is anything but. In my country there are three different-sized "unlimited data" options offered by the monopolist carrier, none of which are actually "unlimited."

Telefonica Movistar flat rate for data is unlimited.

They limit download speed at a certain amount of data download, I think that for 25 you have 1GB of data at HSDPA speed and then you go to 128 kbps
post #6 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gwydion View Post

Telefonica Movistar flat rate for data is unlimited.

They limit download speed at a certain amount of data download, I think that for 25 € you have 1GB of data at HSDPA speed and then you go to 128 kbps

So it's not unlimited, 1GB is nothing, when your phone can watch youtube, let alone, when you download iptv.

But my biggest complaint is SMS, they could be delivered over data connection if wanted, but instead operators want to charge you more for something that is axiomatic. People should just abstain from the SMS packages, and send emails instead. With flat rate at least that is free. I don't even bother to start about call prices, just remaind that bits=bits=bits, and all bits should cost the same.
post #7 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

While pundits fretted over "missing iPhones" supposedly lost to a crisis of overseas unlocking, Apple executives expressed the idea on several occasions that unlocked phone sales were not a problem for the company and only indicated strong demand for the iPhone overseas. Now that Apple has official distribution deals internationally, it has no need to allow grey market sales.

I think what this analysis misses (along with pretty much all the others out there) is that Apple's 3G rollout plan still does not address a big portion of the so called grey market demand, which is that a large number of people did and still do want an *unlocked* phone, i.e. one that you can use in more than one country and with more than one carrier. This is different from a pay-as-you go plan or the fact that Apple will now be selling the phone in 70+ countries.

Elsewhere in the world (and hopefully eventually in the US), people expect having the option to switch SIM cards when traveling and/or switching carriers when they want.
post #8 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by applefrenzy View Post

Elsewhere in the world (and hopefully eventually in the US), people expect having the option to switch SIM cards when traveling and/or switching carriers when they want.

We live in Spain but my wife is Italian so we go 5 or 6 times a year there and we prefer unlocked phones because when we are there we use a prepaid Italian SIM and when we are here wwe use our contract Spanish SIM.

Roaming is very expensive in Europe
post #9 of 39
There will be unlocked phones sold at some point. Some countries require them and with the new pricing regime there is no reason for Apple not to sell unlocked phones, bar exclusivity agreements.
post #10 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by Project2501 View Post

So it's not unlimited, 1GB is nothing, when your phone can watch youtube, let alone, when you download iptv.

No, you can download all you can in a month, only speed varies.

And yes, the more expensive thing in mobile telephony is SMS
post #11 of 39
you guys might wanna correct the text in "spanish". it's supposed to say:

"Bienvenido a la página de registro inicial de su iPhone Movistar en el servicio Zona WiFi de Telefónica. Por favor, introduzca su número de teléfono. Si los datos son correctos empezará a navegar inmediatamente y no se le requerirán en futuros accesos. Si no tiene contratado el servicio iPhone Movistar y quiere acceder al servicio Zona WiFi de Telefónica, pulse aquÃ*."


btw, how about the mexican prices? they're also quite expensive...
post #12 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by merdhead View Post

There will be unlocked phones sold at some point. Some countries require them and with the new pricing regime there is no reason for Apple not to sell unlocked phones, bar exclusivity agreements.

People keep saying these legal requirements at some un-named country.

The only countries with anti-simlocking laws are Belgium and Singapore. Belgium's law is being appeal at the European Court of Justice and the Belgium government is already ready to kill the law. Singapore is a autocratic city state with laws that no legal reasoning --- not a single government white paper explains their anti-simlocking stance.
post #13 of 39
In the UK, unlimited data means unlimited data.
post #14 of 39
Ever notice that 611 is really 911 upside down? Make of it what you will......
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post #15 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by Virgil-TB2 View Post

Also, no matter where you live in the world, there is the fact that "unlimited data" is actually a lie in most cases. While it would be simple false advertising in any other business, the "unlimited data" most carriers advertise is anything but. In my country there are three different-sized "unlimited data" options offered by the monopolist carrier, none of which are actually "unlimited."

With some restrictions on bandwidth hogs. So far in a year I've never had problems or extra fees with AT&T unlimited. The unlimited has been unlimited.
post #16 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hutcho View Post

In the UK, unlimited data means unlimited data.

O rly? Which carrier are you with? And why are we hearing news about people in UK racking up phone bills of £10k+?

The unlimited data in O2 means "un"limited with an excessive usage policy applied.
post #17 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by mclarenf1 View Post

Ever notice that 611 is really 911 upside down? Make of it what you will......

Pleas help me out. Is this supposed to be clever, funny or something else?

( Anyway, when I look at it upside-down it looks like 119)
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post #18 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by mclarenf1 View Post

Ever notice that 611 is really 911 upside down? Make of it what you will......

Launch day is JULY 11, not June 11, Einstein.
post #19 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bageljoey View Post

Pleas help me out. Is this supposed to be clever, funny or something else?

( Anyway, when I look at it upside-down it looks like 119)

It's supposed to be Stupid......
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post #20 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by zeasar View Post

O rly? Which carrier are you with? And why are we hearing news about people in UK racking up phone bills of £10k+?

The unlimited data in O2 means "un"limited with an excessive usage policy applied.

That's roaming data you've heard about. I don't know anybody who has been charged an excess for data, and me and my friends use a fair amount of data.

O2 has really turned out to be a pretty good provider.
post #21 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by applefrenzy View Post

I think what this analysis misses (along with pretty much all the others out there) is that Apple's 3G rollout plan still does not address a big portion of the so called grey market demand, which is that a large number of people did and still do want an *unlocked* phone, i.e. one that you can use in more than one country and with more than one carrier. This is different from a pay-as-you go plan or the fact that Apple will now be selling the phone in 70+ countries. Elsewhere in the world (and hopefully eventually in the US), people expect having the option to switch SIM cards when traveling and/or switching carriers when they want.

Since the new 3G iPhones are going to be much more locked down than the first generation phones, we may see a vibrant used iPhone market on EBay. That may be the only way to get one that's unlocked. Wouldn't it be interesting if you could sell your older iPhone for more money than the cost of the new one

It seems like most everyone hates the cell phone service providers with their 'robber baron' pricing schemes. I think Apple is performing a good public service by pressuring them to provide unlimited data plans.

Also agree with the comments here about SMS being a rip-off. Email is the better way to go. The only reason SMS texting became popular in Europe is that cell phone voice calls were priced so ridiculously high.

Having GPS on the iPhone with Google Maps will be a treat especially in Europe. Next time I'm wandering the streets of Verona I'll stand a much better chance of finding my way back to the place where I parked my rent car.
post #22 of 39
Not to be funny or anything, but us lot in the UK have it pretty good, since the original iPhone came out they've given us unlimited data minutes (under an excessive use policy, apparently it just means if u use more than the average user they'll give you a call), and free wi-fi with the cloud (which can be found in pretty much any coffee shop in the UK), and unlimited txts all for £30 a month with a £7.50 bolt on, I mean, come on! You can't say that's not amazing!

For all of that I don't mind paying more for the iPhone than the yanks, on top of that, u can get the bloody thing on Pay as you go over here, so you're not bound to a contract!

I for one, am not complaining! Most of the mobile operators around here in the UK are now offering unlimited free 3G as standard, it's a great move, I'm assuming it's because the competition for mobile providers here is greater than over there in the US, so the customers here get all of the benefit!
post #23 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bageljoey View Post

Pleas help me out. Is this supposed to be clever, funny or something else?

( Anyway, when I look at it upside-down it looks like 119)

no wonder that pizza never got here last night
post #24 of 39
I recieved an SMS from Vodafone New Zealand yesterday morning which said:

"From 28 July 08 there will be new charges on Vodafone live & a new casual internet data rate on yr mobile. Freecall 489 for pricing & details"

Calling this number told me, among other things:
- Vodafone NZ is introducing a "new low casual rate for internet data" - available on both Prepay and On Account Plans.
- Cost is up to $1.00 NZD per day, for 10MB. You only pay for the days that you use, and if you use less than 10MB in one day, you are only charged for the amount that you use. If you go over this, you are charged at a rate of $1.00 for 1MB.

Still no word on iPhone or plan costs in New Zealand however. But this change seems to be as a direct result of the introduction of the iPhone into NZ next month.
post #25 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by gwilli View Post

I for one, am not complaining! Most of the mobile operators around here in the UK are now offering unlimited free 3G as standard, it's a great move, I'm assuming it's because the competition for mobile providers here is greater than over there in the US, so the customers here get all of the benefit!

Considering that O2's regular price contract plan for £35 gives you the same 600 minutes and the same 500 SMS as the iphone £35 plan (yet the iphone plan has unlimited data) --- I would say that the UK iphone plan is a great deal.

http://www.o2.co.uk/mobilestariffs/t...monthlytariffs

On the other hand, it also means that 99% of the population who doesn't have an iphone --- suffer from some of the most uncompetitive tariffs.
post #26 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

....the iPhone 3G will be more expensive in parts of Europe relative to the US when compared in US dollars. ....the new iPhone will be priced at 199 Euros in parts of Europe, like Spain. ...Thanks to the weak US dollar, at current exchange rates that works out to a little more than $310 in US currency. That pricing premium is nothing new, as Apple's Mac and iPod products in Europe are commonly priced the same in Euros as identical models of Apple's American products are in US dollars, making them a bit more than 50% more expensive outside the US.

Does anyone else think it's crazy how common journalists, analysts, etc always attempt to determine relative value by comparing prices after simply converting them to a common currency? I can already hear people saying "OMG, THOSE EUROPEANS GET RIPPED OFF!". I'm surely no economist (and still young), but I'm pretty sure this is NOT an accurate means of determining value. Different countries have different relative costs for different goods, different per capita mean incomes, the purchasing power of different currencies, etc. Isn't there another step required here to get a more accurate picture of relative costs? Multiplying iPhone price by Big Mac Index? lol

*ALARM*! calling all economists for assistance!
post #27 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by winterspan View Post

Does anyone else think it's crazy how common journalists, analysts, etc always attempt to determine relative value by comparing prices after simply converting them to a common currency? I can already hear people saying "OMG, THOSE EUROPEANS GET RIPPED OFF!". I'm surely no economist (and still young), but I'm pretty sure this is NOT an accurate means of determining value. Different countries have different relative costs for different goods, different per capita mean incomes, etc. Isn't there another step required here to get a more accurate picture of relative costs? calculation involving a "purchasing parity" index or something? Big Mac Index? lol

*ALARM*! calling all economists for assistance!

Sure living in London and Paris is super expensive.

But we are also talking about countries like Italy and Spain --- where GDP per capita is not as high as the US.
post #28 of 39
Now for the missing piece.

Traveling out of country with your iPhone. May not be the usual thing for Yanks, but far easier and cheaper for Europeans and probably Asians.

What is needed is the ability to get only a SIMM card in your second (or multiple) country(s) that will function in your iPhone. The first GSM phone I bought was in Australia for business. When I went to the UK I was able to get another pre-paid SIMM card there and then started using the phone in the US when I changed to ATT.

But that's on a simple mobile phone. There needs to be arrangements between international iPhone carriers that will allow international travelers to use multiple SIMM cards when they travel. One major reason for changing chips when I arrived in a country was that people calling me didn't want to make an international call when I was actually in town!

Hopefully Apple can start getting this worked out.
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post #29 of 39
I love how more details have emerged about June 11 international launches than the June 11 US launch. Cause don't here in the US don't know shit on the part of AT&T.
post #30 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by kenaustus View Post

Now for the missing piece. Traveling out of country with your iPhone. .....What is needed is the ability to get only a SIMM card in your second (or multiple) country(s) that will function in your iPhone.

Yes, this should be a HUGE complaint among iPhone users, especially now that there is no apparent hard and fast rule for carrier exclusivity.

I understand and accept the right of carriers to maintain phone locks when they are subsidizing handsets being used on their network, but I believe it should be regulated. They should have to provide the unlock code after the contract is up or if you pay the contract cancellation fee. They should also have to provide a way to let users use local SIM cards when traveling out of country. It's not fair to make people pay huge roaming bills.

On the other hand, much of this type of regulation wouldn't be necessary if consumers were smarter and organized into a massive "special interest group" that boycotted products and services to get their way. Kind of like a consumer->business collective bargaining! I think the enormous possibilities of the internet for organization should be used in this way! I think the consumerist.com should start a membership club!
post #31 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by samab View Post

People keep saying these legal requirements at some un-named country.

The only countries with anti-simlocking laws are Belgium and Singapore. Belgium's law is being appeal at the European Court of Justice and the Belgium government is already ready to kill the law. Singapore is a autocratic city state with laws that no legal reasoning --- not a single government white paper explains their anti-simlocking stance.

Well I'm from Singapore and I think that anti-simlocking is good for me, the consumer, so I don't think that any explanation is needed. Over here we can change our phones as and when we want to without any worries or restrictions. The only things we can't change so readily is our service contract cos of all the penalties due to the carrier subsidy for your handset.

So what is there that is so bad about anti-simlocking? In fact it encourages a healthy handset market for new and even used handsets. It even encourages handset makers to release their best handsets here cos you can really tell if you have a really hot seller or a lemon. So it encourages all the service providers and handset makers to stay on their toes if they want to keep us using their stuff.

Now if only someone can get Apple to release the iPhone 3G here on 11 July like the rest of the world, I'd be a really happy camper.
post #32 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by jujuman View Post

Well I'm from Singapore and I think that anti-simlocking is good for me, the consumer, so I don't think that any explanation is needed. Over here we can change our phones as and when we want to without any worries or restrictions. The only things we can't change so readily is our service contract cos of all the penalties due to the carrier subsidy for your handset.

Just look at the US --- the US doesn't even have anti-simlocking laws, yet AT&T Wireless and T-Mobile USA both give out unlocking codes for free to their subscribers after 90 days (the exception being the iphone).

Quote:
Originally Posted by winterspan View Post

I understand and accept the right of carriers to maintain phone locks when they are subsidizing handsets being used on their network, but I believe it should be regulated. They should have to provide the unlock code after the contract is up or if you pay the contract cancellation fee. They should also have to provide a way to let users use local SIM cards when traveling out of country. It's not fair to make people pay huge roaming bills.

But --- it is regulated in Europe and the regulations are useless. The US has no simlocking laws --- yet you can get unlocking codes for free after 90 days.
post #33 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by samab View Post

But --- it is regulated in Europe and the regulations are useless. The US has no simlocking laws --- yet you can get unlocking codes for free after 90 days.

Not exactly. Although AT&T and T-mobile may do so, the point still holds with Verizon, Sprint, Alltel, and the all the other smaller CDMA carriers. There is a SIMM card equivalent for the CDMA system which they just chose not to implement. But even without a SIMM card, it should be technically possible to move most modern CDMA phones between the two networks, however they don't let you do this.
post #34 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by winterspan View Post

Not exactly. Although AT&T and T-mobile may do so, the point still holds with Verizon, Sprint, Alltel, and the all the other smaller CDMA carriers. There is a SIMM card equivalent for the CDMA system which they just chose not to implement. But even without a SIMM card, it should be technically possible to move most modern CDMA phones between the two networks, however they don't let you do this.

Verizon doesn't even lock their phones.

It really doesn't matter whether it's "technically possible" --- it should only matter whether it's "financially reasonable". Most of these European countries don't even have ETF's --- the consumers have to eat the remaining contract fee before they can get out of contract.
post #35 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by winterspan View Post

Not exactly. Although AT&T and T-mobile may do so, the point still holds with Verizon, Sprint, Alltel, and the all the other smaller CDMA carriers. There is a SIMM card equivalent for the CDMA system which they just chose not to implement. But even without a SIMM card, it should be technically possible to move most modern CDMA phones between the two networks, however they don't let you do this.

MetroPCS is apparently willing to re-flash your phone.
http://telephonyonline.com/wireless/...metropcs-0626/
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post #36 of 39
Quote:
Sources close to Telefonica, Apple's Spanish iPhone partner, indicate that Jobs leveraged that worldwide iPhone demand to push mobile providers to offer a flat data rate, something that many international telcos were loath to do.
...
While individual plans in every launch country have not yet been officially released, sources indicate Apple had demanded all international carriers offer a flat rate for unlimited data, although those plans are often more expensive than AT&T's iPhone deal in the US, perhaps as high as 90 Euros per month.

Well, apparently not in Finland, one of the lucky countries to get the iPhone 3G on July 11th. According to the sole provider Sonera there's no "unlimited data" plan. The most you can get is 1GB for almost 90 euros/month.

At least for me, that probably means I'll pass on the iPhone for now. Has anyone seen a comparison between different countries on the total price for getting an iPhone? (cost up front + monthly cost)
post #37 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by oceanwalker View Post

Has anyone seen a comparison between different countries on the total price for getting an iPhone? (cost up front + monthly cost)

I don't know how you could do this, as the plans are so convoluted. Just look at the plans for Australia posted today--I don't think I have seen "flag fees" anywhere else.
I just dont see any way to compare...
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post #38 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bageljoey View Post

I don't know how you could do this, as the plans are so convoluted. Just look at the plans for Australia posted today--I don't think I have seen "flag fees" anywhere else.
I just dont see any way to compare...

Quite a few countries have many many regulations from handset subsidies to simlocking to contract lengths....

So carriers think up new ways to bypass these regulations. No handset subsidies allow --- no problem, we will just rent you the phone or some sort of complicated handset prepayment scheme where we will give you a discount back average month for the rest of your 24 month contract.
post #39 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bageljoey View Post

I don't know how you could do this, as the plans are so convoluted. Just look at the plans for Australia posted today--I don't think I have seen "flag fees" anywhere else.
I just dont see any way to compare...

Finland has flag fees as well.
For calls and text they are pretty cheap, 7.9 c (¢12 US), but for data not so much, 1.49 euros/MB! That's $2.36. Enough to kill a horse.
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