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Apple Stores now selling iPhone 3G without a contract

post #1 of 41
Thread Starter 
Apple retail stores as of Thursday are selling unrestricted quantities of the iPhone 3G at the full, non-subsidized price of $599 for the 8GB version and $699 for the 16GB models.

The move follows AT&T's plans to sell one phone per customer at the full price for existing customers of its service. In Apple's case however, there is no limit on the number of phones a buyer can purchase, and no need to have an existing AT&T contract.

Activation can completed by the customer at home through iTunes.

While the phones are still technically locked to AT&T service, it is possible (but not supported) to unlock the phones for use with other mobile service providers. In the US, that is largely limited to T-Moble, although that GSM provider does not support the same 3G network the iPhone 3G needs to connect at faster than EDGE speeds.

Apple's change in sales policy comes as the company is working to sell off remaining inventory to prepare for the upcoming launch of the new 2009 iPhone, expected to be released around the middle of June, possibly at the company's similarly-timed Worldwide Developer Conference.
post #2 of 41
hope this means a new iphone 32gb
post #3 of 41
Once again, Apple screws over Canada.

We need to boycott their products.

We cant buy it at Rogers unless you buy it on a 3 yr...
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post #4 of 41
I just hope they clear up the carrier unlock issue. Just tell us when official unlocking will be available or what is the iPhone unlock policy!!!
post #5 of 41
So they are not avalible online yet?
post #6 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by italiankid View Post

Once again, Apple screws over Canada.

We need to boycott their products.

We cant buy it at Rogers unless you buy it on a 3 yr...

Hopefully this is a sign of good things to come for us though.
post #7 of 41
So cheap you can't afford one
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post #8 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

While the phones are still technically locked to AT&T service, it is possible (but not supported) to unlock the phones for use with other mobile service providers. In the US, that is largely limited to T-Moble and Metro PCS, although both GSM providers do not support the 3G network the iPhone 3G needs to connect at faster than EDGE speeds.

Metro PCS is CDMA
post #9 of 41
Clear the inventory!!
Push the new phone!
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post #10 of 41
It's as if going from the iPhone to the iPhone 3G, there's no price decrease in what the parts cost! They REALLY want people to buy a contract with these things!

Silly thing is that paying the ETF gets you an iPhone at about $150 cheaper.
post #11 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by italiankid View Post

Once again, Apple screws over Canada.

We need to boycott their products.

We cant buy it at Rogers unless you buy it on a 3 yr...

But, seriously, why do you care? You dislike Apple, you dislike their products, and you plan to get a PC ASAP, so surely further horribleness from Apple doesn't really matter to you, at this point?
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post #12 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by NasserAE View Post

I just hope they clear up the carrier unlock issue. Just tell us when official unlocking will be available or what is the iPhone unlock policy!!!

It is available, just not to Americans, my Australian Vodafone one is officially unlocked as these pictures show (hot swappable SIM too).









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post #13 of 41
I bought my iPhone 3g from Telstra in Australia for $850 (AUD). Then paid another $150 to have it unlocked legitimately.

Optus will unlock your iPhone for free if you sign a contract with them and Vodafone will charge around $50.

In other words, there is an easy (and quick) way to unlock the 3g iPhones that doesn't need breaking the thing.

However, you can use the iPhone 3g with practically any network in australia.
I'm with 3. I'm thinking of going to TPG Mobile. But also seeing what my options are with Virgin Mobile.

They all work with the iPhone. Whereas in the US, you're only gonna get the proper signal with AT&T.
post #14 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by yvo84 View Post

I bought my iPhone 3g from Telstra in Australia for $850 (AUD). Then paid another $150 to have it unlocked legitimately.

Optus will unlock your iPhone for free if you sign a contract with them and Vodafone will charge around $50.

In other words, there is an easy (and quick) way to unlock the 3g iPhones that doesn't need breaking the thing.

However, you can use the iPhone 3g with practically any network in australia.
I'm with 3. I'm thinking of going to TPG Mobile. But also seeing what my options are with Virgin Mobile.

They all work with the iPhone. Whereas in the US, you're only gonna get the proper signal with AT&T.

Unlocking is free with Australian Vodafone but they only have them on contract.

You go to their website, enter your IMEI and a captcha then restore it in iTunes, then you get that wonderful message from iTunes I'll no doubt see again when I update to 3.0, "Your iPhone is officially unlocked".

btw Thanks to Sol Trujillo, Telstra uses the same 850 band AT&T uses.
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post #15 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by hill60 View Post

Unlocking is free with Australian Vodafone but they only have them on contract.

You go to their website, enter your IMEI and a captcha then restore it in iTunes, then you get that wonderful message from iTunes I'll no doubt see again when I update to 3.0, "Your iPhone is officially unlocked".

btw Thanks to Sol Trujillo, Telstra uses the same 850 band AT&T uses.

Yeah but Telstra is extremely expensive and has terrible customer service.

My contract is up next month with 3.

I'm gonna either go with the 49 cap with TPG which gives you $1000 worth of calls, text and mms plus 500megs of data.

Or with Virgin's 99 cap, which gives you unlimited calls, text and mms and 1gig of data.
post #16 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by addabox View Post

But, seriously, why do you care? You dislike Apple, you dislike their products, and you plan to get a PC ASAP, so surely further horribleness from Apple doesn't really matter to you, at this point?

Actually I like Apple. I was expecting more when I came over.

The iPhone has been tons of issues for me. I want others to experience what I have lol

The iMac has been problematic too...


I Loved the 1st gen iPhone though!
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post #17 of 41
This makes to sense at all cause your only doing AT&T a favor since you have to go to them for 3G access anyway. Now if people had a option to buy the unit at full price in exchange for cheaper plans then it would have been worth it.
post #18 of 41
So, iPod Touch is going for 229 US, and Unlocked iPhone is going for 599 US... does the cell phone technology that's in these devices really cost 370 dollars? If so, why? Licensing or what? I'm sure there is some "good" reason, and its part of the Wireless carriers (even though I'd like to blame Apple, I think the carriers have their hands in deeper on this one), or is the price PURELY to try to encourage people to sign up with ATT?

Something smells very fishy.
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post #19 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by yvo84 View Post

Yeah but Telstra is extremely expensive and has terrible customer service.

My contract is up next month with 3.

I'm gonna either go with the 49 cap with TPG which gives you $1000 worth of calls, text and mms plus 500megs of data.

Or with Virgin's 99 cap, which gives you unlimited calls, text and mms and 1gig of data.

Despite being a loyal TPG Internet customer for many years I hesitate to deal with the phone company formerly known as Soul which incorporated B Digital who were/are not exactly reknowned for their billing systems, I think you better head over to Whirlpool.net and do a little research.

Vodafone have just introduced a $114 Unlimited Plan with 2GB data included.
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post #20 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by dagamer34 View Post

It's as if going from the iPhone to the iPhone 3G, there's no price decrease in what the parts cost! They REALLY want people to buy a contract with these things!

put the blame where it belongs. ATT. they have the exclusive rights to service the phone as payback for fronting part of the devo costs. this is known fact and has been for a while. but folks were buying the 1st phone with no activation and then unlocking it. requiring activation and contract signing at the time of the buy was their way of trying to make sure they got the subscribers. and it probably worked to a point. at least if someone backed out they broke even between the ETF and the unrefundable activation fees.

there is a strong chance that this change is not only about selling down stock before there might be a new model but also to slam resellers. at this point they go into the stores, set up a family plan, grab 5 phones on the cheapest plan, cancel on day 31 and pay the ETF then unlock them and resell them on whatever network (some of them probably not telling customers there is no warranty on the phone now but that's a different thread). which means that ATT is still out $200 a unit they paid on each phone (that's right they are actually paying $400 in the cost if you are on an eligible contract). they can't stop these folks but they can make sure they aren't out any money. so they get it all upfront.

and who knows, maybe their exclusive contract is going to end soon so it comes out the same whether the phones go no contract and they get the money now or in 6 -12 months when the exclusive ends and folks break and switch then. heck it's better now cause in 6 months the ETF will have gone down $30.

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post #21 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by charlituna View Post

put the blame where it belongs. ATT. they have the exclusive rights to service the phone as payback for fronting part of the devo costs. this is known fact and has been for a while. but folks were buying the 1st phone with no activation and then unlocking it. requiring activation and contract signing at the time of the buy was their way of trying to make sure they got the subscribers. and it probably worked to a point. at least if someone backed out they broke even between the ETF and the unrefundable activation fees.

There is another aspect to the contract thing.

In Australia the other night there was a story on one of our Current Affairs (I use the term loosely as they seem to be more concerned about sensationalized affairs and product promotion.) Programs, which crop up fairly regularly, some poor sap with an iPhone on a $30 plan whining about the thousand's of dollars in data charges he'd racked up.

I suppose it's different in a country with WiFi on every corner like the US, but someone has to protect these idiots from themselves.
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post #22 of 41
I am baffled with all the whining. When it is locked. When do we get an unlocked iPhone? When it is unlocked. Why so costly?

No one is forcing you to buy an iPhone. You will not die, not having an iPhone. You can live a full life without an iPhone.

What you can be, is that you will die of envy -- wanting something that you always have something to complain about. Or, is that the goal of your life? Complain.
post #23 of 41
$599? $699?!? I paid $349 for a 1G iPhone refurbed and have been using it unlocked for 18 months on T-Mobile. There is no way I would pay that much just to move to 3G (since I can't actually GET 3G). Weren't the iSuppli BOM costs like $279 for the iPhone 3G? That's a 100% margin when you consider development!

I'll wait for the iPhone 3.0 OS and the iPhone 3.0 (4G? 3.5G?) before I make any moves. I like my iPhone 1G. It's still just a phone.
post #24 of 41
If you happen to live in the U.S. (like myself), I don't see how buying the unlocked version makes any sense. Why would you choose to fork over $699 vs $399 for a 16GB? Like the article states, the alternative to go to here in the U.S. are extremely limited. I could see this being somewhat enticing if the iPhone included both GSM and CDMA technology, and therefore would open you to all carriers, but alas, its doesn't. The only way I could see the unlocked iPhone being of any value is if you are a frequent world traveler hopping around every 6 months to a year, and are enlisting and dropping GSM carriers a lot. The unlocked price vs. the contract price with AT&T plus everything you get with it makes that the better deal by far.
post #25 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by camroidv27 View Post

So, iPod Touch is going for 229 US, and Unlocked iPhone is going for 599 US...

In fact, that is not true. The $599 and $699 iPhone 3Gs are still locked to AT&T, in that they contain technological measures which will cause them to reject any SIM card that comes from any carrier other than AT&T.

It's just that you can now leave the store with the phone, but without any contractual obligation to sign up for 2 years of AT&T service at the same time.

Instead, you might choose to sign up for service later on from home. Or maybe you might give it away as a gift and leave it up to the recipient to decide whether or not to sign up for service. Either way, you're still getting your service from AT&T. Heck, for all Apple cares, you might decide to never activate it, and instead use it as an attractive paperweight or centrepiece for your coffee table.

Also, if you do activate it on AT&T, you won't need to commit to a 2-year contractual term, but rather can sign up for month-to-month service, and have the option of giving AT&T 30 days advance notice of your decision to terminate your service at any time without incurring an ETF penalty.

I suppose you might choose to go down the unauthorized jailbreak&unlock route, and sign up for service with somebody other than AT&T, but in that case you're still violating Apple's software EULA (no reverse-engineering, no modifications of Apple's copyrighted software) and voiding your warranty.
post #26 of 41
Yes, but what OS are you using?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Eriamjh View Post

$599? $699?!? I paid $349 for a 1G iPhone refurbed and have been using it unlocked for 18 months on T-Mobile. There is no way I would pay that much just to move to 3G (since I can't actually GET 3G). Weren't the iSuppli BOM costs like $279 for the iPhone 3G? That's a 100% margin when you consider development!

I'll wait for the iPhone 3.0 OS and the iPhone 3.0 (4G? 3.5G?) before I make any moves. I like my iPhone 1G. It's still just a phone.
post #27 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by camroidv27 View Post

So, iPod Touch is going for 229 US, and Unlocked iPhone is going for 599 US... does the cell phone technology that's in these devices really cost 370 dollars? If so, why? Licensing or what? I'm sure there is some "good" reason, and its part of the Wireless carriers (even though I'd like to blame Apple, I think the carriers have their hands in deeper on this one), or is the price PURELY to try to encourage people to sign up with ATT?

Something smells very fishy.

No, the cell phone technology in iPhone 3G does not cost an extra 370 dollars. But there's nothing fishy.

Some basic economics: In a capitalistic economy, the price of a product is set by the seller at what the seller thinks a buyer is willing to pay. Supply and demand. Since AT&T believes customers are willing to pay $200 with 2-year contract, Apple believes AT&T and other carriers are willing to pay about $500 for it. They are now testing how much customers are willing to pay for iPhone 3G without a contract but since, in this Apple-carrier partnership, the preference is that customers sign up for a contract, they are really testing the upper limit, not the lower limit.

For now, many customers have been willing to pay $200 with 2-year contract, and many customers have been willing to pay $230 for iPod touch (with no phone but no 2-year contract). There maybe more optimal points on the price vs. sales curve but Apple is willing to forgo revenue or profit to reach other goals. But what this does show is that, to date, bottom line, some 17m people believe having a phone in a converged device is worth the contract minus $30, while 13m believe that it is not.

In a capitalistic economy, customers show their preference by choosing to buy or not to buy.
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post #28 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by mark2005 View Post

No, the cell phone technology in iPhone 3G does not cost an extra 370 dollars. But there's nothing fishy.

Some basic economics: In a capitalistic economy, the price of a product is set by the seller at what the seller thinks a buyer is willing to pay. Supply and demand. Since AT&T believes customers are willing to pay $200 with 2-year contract, Apple believes AT&T and other carriers are willing to pay about $500 for it. They are now testing how much customers are willing to pay for iPhone 3G without a contract but since, in this Apple-carrier partnership, the preference is that customers sign up for a contract, they are really testing the upper limit, not the lower limit.

For now, many customers have been willing to pay $200 with 2-year contract, and many customers have been willing to pay $230 for iPod touch (with no phone but no 2-year contract). There maybe more optimal points on the price vs. sales curve but Apple is willing to forgo revenue or profit to reach other goals. But what this does show is that, to date, bottom line, some 17m people believe having a phone in a converged device is worth the contract minus $30, while 13m believe that it is not.

In a capitalistic economy, customers show their preference by choosing to buy or not to buy.

Hence the new Microsoft advertising campaign showcasing how expensive (or overpriced perhaps) Apple products really are.
post #29 of 41
(Deleted. Someone else scooped me on the italiankid)
post #30 of 41
While I do hope that mobile phone companies move toward a more European model of doing business (as I understand it): The consumer buys whatever phone they want and then chooses the provider they desire, and that providers offer more a la carte services so that the consumer can pay for what they use and not have to pay for what they don't. I rarely use the phone, maybe 50 to 100 minutes a month, but I'm paying for 500 minutes a month - which means I have well over 4500 rollover minutes racked up that I'll never use. But, I have to pay extra for unlimited text, which I use all the time. I'm cool with paying for unlimited data (even if EDGE is creepy-crawly slow - 1st Gen iPhone still) as I use that all the time as well. But enough of my whiny rant. But I think we're stuck with the current model of business for a while, as well as having two different technologies making switching carriers difficult.

I think it's obvious that both Apple and AT&T are trying to clear out stock in preparation for a new model to be introduced this summer, and they're also probably using the opportunity to collect data for marketing purposes as mentioned by others here.

I'd like to make a prediction about the next model here, if I may:
1st Gen was called simply iPhone. The intro model.
2nd Gen (or arguably Gen 1.5) was called iPhone 3G. Added 3G and GPS.
My prediction: The next gen iPhone will have video capabilities, so it'll be called iPhone Video.
You heard it here first!
post #31 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by addabox View Post

But, seriously, why do you care? You dislike Apple, you dislike their products, and you plan to get a PC ASAP, so surely further horribleness from Apple doesn't really matter to you, at this point?

I can't speak for the original poster, but I don't blame Apple for Rogers offering such a lousy deal to iPhone buyers. I put the blame squarely on Rogers.

I'd like to have an iPhone, but I'm going going to sell my soul for 3 years to get a measly 1 Gb of data per month.

Still, I'd like to see Apple put some more pressure on Rogers to offer a better deal. What they're offering is highway robbery.
post #32 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by teckstud View Post

Hence the new Microsoft advertising campaign showcasing how expensive (or overpriced perhaps) Apple products really are.

Microsoft is shouting "I'm a PC. I'm cheaper."

Apple can easily respond: "Do you want cheap? Or do you want good value?"
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post #33 of 41
Since Rogers/Fido are the only networks in Canada on which the iPhone will work, I don't see a need to sell it otherwise.

If they did, it wouldn't be subsidized and based on average usage, the service is less than in the US.

6GB data when the average user consumes less than 200 MBs/month and no charge for instant messages that are addressed to me, as well as I can tether without another charge…seems like a dumb idea to pay $700-$1000 because you have a hatred for Apple.

P.S. Last I heard, the average iPhone user in the US is using less than 150 MBs/month on their AT&T Data Plan. Tethering when it comes will be extra. And as all carriers in the US do their instant text messaging is basically extra, even when somebody sends you one and you don't open it.
post #34 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by italiankid View Post

Once again, Apple screws over Canada.

We need to boycott their products.

We cant buy it at Rogers unless you buy it on a 3 yr...

Since you demonstrated with your past posts that you're simply trolling this board with anti-apple propaganda, i think i keep my torch and pitchfork in the shed for now...
post #35 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by cgc0202 View Post

I am baffled with all the whining. When it is locked. When do we get an unlocked iPhone? When it is unlocked. Why so costly?

No one is forcing you to buy an iPhone. You will not die, not having an iPhone. You can live a full life without an iPhone.

What you can be, is that you will die of envy -- wanting something that you always have something to complain about. Or, is that the goal of your life? Complain.

I am baffled too. My iPhone works great with AT&T and I am not upset at all about having a two year contract.

Who would buy an unlocked phone for $499/$599 when it only works with T-Mobile in the US as an alternative, and no 3G speed? Might as well buy a used original iPhone, if you really want to unlock it. Of course some minor features don't work when it is unlocked.
post #36 of 41
While there seems to be a lot of carrier based hate going on, is it not possible to simply choose *not* to activate a new iPhone with any carrier? I know for me, with Wifi available everywhere I normally go, buying one outright could be a great deal. I'll just use a VOIP app for my phoning. Surely turning off the cell wireless features would allow me to run a VOIP app in the foreground for quite a long time.
post #37 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brau View Post

While there seems to be a lot of carrier based hate going on, is it not possible to simply choose *not* to activate a new iPhone with any carrier? I know for me, with Wifi available everywhere I normally go, buying one outright could be a great deal. I'll just use a VOIP app for my phoning. Surely turning off the cell wireless features would allow me to run a VOIP app in the foreground for quite a long time.

What about an ipod touch? It doesn't come with a camera or built-in mic, but it's a hell of a lot cheaper.

Besides, I think you would have to jailbreak an iPhone to use it without activation.
post #38 of 41
I have thought about a Touch but I want a built-in Mic, camera (I use it often) and the ability to purchase a cell contract if I go traveling.
post #39 of 41
pathetic, at that price it should be unlocked.
post #40 of 41
I didn't see that in that at all. The only criteria she had was a 17" for under $1000 regardless of all other factors.

The computer she bought was not the equivalent of the MacBook.

Quote:
Originally Posted by teckstud View Post

Hence the new Microsoft advertising campaign showcasing how expensive (or overpriced perhaps) Apple products really are.
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