iPhone: AT&T deal under scrutiny by government, Verizon

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  • Reply 81 of 124
    solipsismsolipsism Posts: 25,726member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by TBaggins View Post


    Apple's been getting a handle on the cell market since '05 and the ROKR. They'll be hitting Europe in a few months, and Asia next year. If they don't have a good handle by then, they're going to be in for a bit of a rough ride.



    By 'handle' I meant that Apple would researching the requirement of eventually becoming their own MVNO. A huge commitment, but quite possible with Apple's money. And knowing that Apple likes to control the entire environment and the real money is in the cell service. I can see Apple either buying a smaller carrier's network after it has several iPhone versions in a few years. The idea of being able to use your AppleNet carrier with your iPhone to connect to your home Mac via your .Mac account all with zero configuration would be a benefit to many. (that is pure speculation)





    Quote:

    And there's really no way the iPhone can cost 'several hundred dollars' more. If Apple charged $1000-1500 for it, it would flop. Only the diehards would buy it then.



    Hence the monthly payments from AT&T that hide these higher fees from the consumer's initial purchase.





    Quote:

    First off, I don't think Apple is going to go the unlocked route, unless of course it was mandated by the government.



    I'm not sure I understand this "multi-carrier" term you are using. I thought you meant "unlocked". Are you suggesting that Apple open it's phone to the big-4 carriers while still maintaining a locked phone from other carriers? If so, would Apple have 2 or 4 different versions or one version that can easily be moved from carrier to carrier. Wouldn't this cause a conflict of interest in Apple's attempt at getting a monthly service fee (forced to only get a subsidized payment) and not being able to research and innovate in manufacturer/carrier integrated services?
  • Reply 82 of 124
    tbagginstbaggins Posts: 2,306member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Robin Hood View Post


    I'd say part of the reason why average voice minute usage in Europe are lower than in the US are:



    1. Unlimited free incoming calls.



    Yeah, I accounted for that. Even doubling the Euro average to reflect free incoming, as I did, still leaves the Euros way below US voice usage.



    Quote:

    2. Higher cell phone penetration. In Ireland, it's at 110% right now. That's bound to have an effect on how many minutes are used. And if you do sign a 12-month contract here, most networks will give you free unlimited mobile to mobile calls within their network, or free unlimited weekend calls to all networks.



    Nearly all US carriers offer free unlimited mobile-to-mobile, free unlimited nights, AND free unlimited weekends as a matter of course (all on the same plan).



    Though, like you, we do have to sign a contract to get all of those goodies.



    .
  • Reply 83 of 124
    solipsismsolipsism Posts: 25,726member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by addicted44 View Post


    For e.g. The Razr. All over the world, outside the US, the Razr was being sold with iTunes, allowing users to download as many songs onto it as they wanted. Except, in the US, the carriers did not allow the razr to carry itunes, so in the US only the rokr series had itunes on it. It was a completely ridiculous situation, ensuring that the best selling phone in the US was still not half as good as its brethren abroad.



    According to Wikipedia* and its citations the RAZR had many versions sold in various places. The iTunes capable RAZR V3i was sold in the US by Cingular, though the V3r/V3t versions sold by Cingular and T-Mobile used Motorola's Digital Audio Player. Also, a dark blue version in the UK was the V3r and therefore had no iTunes.



    * I know, it's Wikipedia anc be edited by anyone, but I tend to believe a well written article with well cited sources more than your average faceless poster on AI.







    PS: TBaggins, according to Wikipedia "The Motorola DAP does not suffer from this [100 song] cap; however, it takes considerably longer time to load and uses the V3's battery at a much faster rate than iTunes does." I'm just sayin',
  • Reply 84 of 124
    tbagginstbaggins Posts: 2,306member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by solipsism View Post


    By 'handle' I meant that Apple would researching the requirement of eventually becoming their own MVNO. A huge commitment, but quite possible with Apple's money. And knowing that Apple likes to control the entire environment and the real money is in the cell service.



    I can see Apple either buying a smaller carrier's network after it has several iPhone versions in a few years. The idea of being able to use your AppleNet carrier with your iPhone to connect to your home Mac via your .Mac account all with zero configuration would be a benefit to many. (that is pure speculation)



    I don't see Apple going MVNO unless it has no other good options. MVNO is kind of the worst of both worlds for them... a major headache for Apple AND they're still reliant on a carrier to lease airtime/network capacity from.



    As Jobs said, "The carriers have probably forgotten more about how to run a network than we know."



    Buying a network isn't a walk in the park either. It would probably cost them something like 30, 40 billion dollars to buy up enough network to offer good national coverage. That's a great deal of cheddar, even for Apple, even now. And is it a business they really want to get into, or is it something that distracts them from their core competencies?





    Quote:

    Hence the monthly payments from AT&T that hide these higher fees from the consumer's initial purchase.



    I don't think the iPhone really COSTS $1000-1500 to make, if that's what you're trying to say. iPhone teardowns, while inherently lowball because they tend not to include significant costs such as R&D, marketing, shipping, etc., still don't come anywhere near that figure. Nor do competing 'super-phones' like the Nokia N95, which arguably have more features/capability than than the iPhone.





    Quote:

    I'm not sure I understand this "multi-carrier" term you are using. I thought you meant "unlocked". Are you suggesting that Apple open it's phone to the big-4 carriers while still maintaining a locked phone from other carriers? If so, would Apple have 2 or 4 different versions or one version that can easily be moved from carrier to carrier.



    Apple would only need 2 versions (CDMA and GSM), not 4. Verizon and Sprint are both CDMA (as is Alltel, if you want to throw a 10 million customer regional carrier into the mix), while ATT and T-Mobile are both GSM. 'Other technology' networks in the US market, such as iDEN and TDMA, are well on their way to being retired, so Apple doesn't have to worry about them.



    I guess WiMax might be the lone 'third option' that Apple may have to worry about supporting, eventually.



    Quote:

    Wouldn't this cause a conflict of interest in Apple's attempt at getting a monthly service fee (forced to only get a subsidized payment) and not being able to research and innovate in manufacturer/carrier integrated services?



    No, or at least, I don't think so. Apple can offer the deal to the other carriers, and insist upon things like visual voicemail being part of the bargain. And if you're an ATT competitor, do you really want to NOT support features like that, knowing that ATT is going to club you about the head and shoulders for it in their advertising? Why do the iPhone half-ass, if you know the competition is going to point that out very vocally? The same thing could hold true for Verizon and its policy of crippling/blocking certain Bluetooth file transfers.



    And why can't Apple get a cut of the monthlies from multiple carriers at the same time? It would be part of the deal. "You want the iPhone? Pony up."



    .
  • Reply 85 of 124
    tbagginstbaggins Posts: 2,306member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by solipsism;1110904

    PS: TBaggins, according to Wikipedia "The Motorola DAP does not suffer from this [100 song



    cap; however, it takes considerably longer time to load and uses the V3[RAZR's] battery at a much faster rate than iTunes does." I'm just sayin',



    C'mon solip, you must be getting by now that the ROKR was Apple-crippled to avoid cannibalization of the iPod. The Moto OS/UI *is* a bit slow (at least pre-JUIX), but there's no true fig leaf there, if you dig in and really read about it.



    All this of course is now a non-issue, because Apple is now happy to self-cannibalize the iPod with the iPhone... hey, better them than someone else.



    .
  • Reply 86 of 124
    jdwjdw Posts: 1,002member
    Sometimes I really like what I read on AppleInsider, and other times I think the article titles here begin to resemble that of MacCentral or CNN. Folks, I prefer the truth in all forms, including headline content. Since when did one man, a Democrat no less, become the entire US Government? Since when? Since AppleInsider wrote the headline, I guess? Well, thank God AppleInsider is not running the US Government. And folks, Ed Markey is a member of our Congress but he alone is not "the Government." The appropriate title should have been:



    iPhone: AT&T deal under scrutiny by Congressional Representative



    or



    iPhone: AT&T deal under scrutiny by Democrat from Massachusetts





    I personally think that Apple would have liked an unlocked iPhone because they know more people would buy it that way. But they also wanted some firsts in the market, including Visual Voice mail. Apple also wanted profits above and beyond the phone itself. To strike those two key deals (Visual Voice Mail & contractual royalties), they had to get into bed with one partner. And the only partner that made sense to Apple was AT&T, despite how bad AT&T is in many respects. But as one consolation, Apple knew it would not have to lock the phone (and in some cases, legally cannot lock the phone) in countries outside the US. So they are merely looking forward to those sales while enduring the wrath of AT&T hating customers in the US (and the wrath of Ed Markey).



    But as much as I personally think an exclusive with AT&T stinks, I feel strongly that the market should be left alone. Republican or Democrat, "representatives" of our government should keep their noses out of it. Every time the government sticks its nose in something, my tax burden increases and red tape abounds.



    And those of you bashing the President need to muzzle it. As much as I'd like to bash the President, I can't for two reasons: (1) because so many people are doing it, leaving me no freedom to do so with a clear mind; and (2) because the President has absolutely nothing to do with this article -- it's about one Congressman, AT&T and the iPhone, for crying out loud.



    With that said, I strongly suggest that during the next Presidential election, regardless of whether you are Republican or Democrat (or other), you need to vote for someone who doesn't make it a family business to run for public office. If your father was President, you should be legally banned from running for President (or any other public office). And I felt that way long before Bush was ever elected, so my thoughts on this "family ban" have nothing whatsoever to do with how good or bad our President has conducted himself in office. Vote out the incumbents. And vote Yes on "term limits" for all members of government, not just the President! (Ed Markey has been in office since 1976!) Only then can we expect the representatives of the US Government to leave well enough alone in the free market.
  • Reply 87 of 124
    maestro64maestro64 Posts: 5,022member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by cmoney View Post


    Apart from the iPhone, AT&T is actually one of the best carriers as far as contracts go. AFAIK, you can walk into an AT&T store and pay full price for a phone and not have to get a contract. Verizon requires at least a one year contract no matter how much you pay for the device.



    Also if you pay full price for an AT&T phone, you can fax the receipt to AT&T customer service and they'll give you the unlock code no questions asked. Not only that, if you do get a contract, they'll still give the unlock code after a few months if you ask them for it.



    The whole unsubsidized iPhone with contract is kinda screwy but it doesn't affect upgrade eligibility so the subsidy is still there, it just can't be applied to the iPhone. You can get any other phone for free (or discounted) and sell it.



    I have to agree, Everyone complains about contracts and phones, With every provider except Verizon you do not have to get a contract or get a free phone. People do have choice, but they obviously do not see it that why. The Providers have conditioned everyone they can get a free phone if they get a plan with minutes. Then People see no value on the phone anymore and then complain they have to have a contract.



    Look you can go out pay full price for any phone which has not been designed specifically for a provider (iphone excluded) and go to any provider which the phone is compatible (remember Verizon is the odd man out with CDMA, but with GSM you could can go to a number of providers) and get their sim card and no contract and your set, and you can change provider as many times as you like.



    But if you want the free phone or the product the provider has you have to sign the deal with the devil.



    One last point, besides Verizon not allowing their phones to be unlocked, they also disable lots of the functionality of the phones like BlueTooth file syncing. The other providers let you use all the features of the phone.
  • Reply 88 of 124
    maestro64maestro64 Posts: 5,022member
    Also, we all are assuming the iphone can not be unlocked and moved to another provider. I think this a bad assumption. The deal with AT&T is about distribution, it did not say anything about longer term use. In two year I bet there will be a way to unlock and move the phone to another provide since at that time there will be other provider with iphone services. Remember the deal is only for this phone, if apple comes up with other phones they could be offered by other providers. Once this happens i bet you could move the current iphone once your plans is up.
  • Reply 89 of 124
    tbagginstbaggins Posts: 2,306member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by JDW View Post


    And those of you bashing the President need to muzzle it.



    Yawn. Its not 'bashing' if its true. Dubya SUCKS, and I'll happily say it 'til the end of time.



    And most of the country knows it, considering the guy's approval ratings are at 29 percent, i.e. nearing 'Nixon during Watergate' levels. Even my ultraconservative mom and older sister have stopped defending him, and that is saying something.



    The worst Prez since Herbert Hoover. Tough to do, but he worked at it.





    .
  • Reply 90 of 124
    jocknerdjocknerd Posts: 28member
    Don't let the owners of the network infrastructure be the carrier providers. This goes for cell phone, cable, fiber, whatever. Remember in the 90's when you could choose between 100 local ISP's when your only internet connection was the phone line? Wouldn't it be great if we could have the same choices over cable, fiber, and cellular networks?
  • Reply 91 of 124
    tbagginstbaggins Posts: 2,306member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Maestro64 View Post


    I have to agree, Everyone complains about contracts and phone, With every provide except Verizon you do not have to get a contract or get a free phone. People do have choice, but they obviously do not see it that why. The Provider have conditioned everyone that they can get a free phone if they get a plan with minutes. They People see no value on the phone anymore and then complain they have to have contract.



    Look you can go out an pay full priced for any phone which has not been designed specifically for a provider (iphone excluded) and go to any provider which the phone is compatible (remember Verizon is the odd man out with CDMA, but with GSM could can no to a number of providers) and get their sim card and no contract and your set, and you can change provider as many times as you like.



    But if you want the free phone or the product that provider has you have to sign the deal with the devil.



    One last point, besides Verizon not allowing their phones to be unlocked, the also disable lots of the functionality of the phone like BlueTooth file syncing. The other provides let you use all the features of the phone.





    Yep. But by the same token, Verizon is also the only carrier who pro-rates the early termination fee on their contracts. You don't see ATT, T-Mobile, or Sprint doing that. You always pay the full ETF with them if you want out of a contract early. \



    So yeah, I could see why you'd want to go sans contract with those providers.



    Btw, Verizon isn't really the 'odd man out' by going with CDMA. In the US, CDMA is actually more popular than GSM. Sprint is CDMA too, as are all the big regional carriers (Alltel, US Cellular, Cricket, Metro PCS).



    Meanwhile, GSM in the US is ATT and T-Mobile... and that's about it (aside from a few *tiny* regionals- Dobson was the last one left of any size, but ATT is buying them out).





    .
  • Reply 92 of 124
    Haha! Nice! Verizon is being defensive because they know they turned down a HUGE opportunity. I bet they never thought the iPhone would be this big of a deal. C'mon fellas. Here's a tissue. Now go sulk somewhere else. LOL



    ps. I am actually on Verizon. Sucks I can't use an iPhone but then again at those prices I'll pass.
  • Reply 93 of 124
    swiftswift Posts: 436member
    The biggest reason why there was this space for Apple to expand the definition of a phone is that the monopolism that the wireless networks practice in the U.S. actually retards development. The wireless networks need to be deprecated against the phone developers. The wireless networks need to share connections -- in much the same way the Internet works. The closest tower snags the call, and gets the connection fee. Then the home network gets to transport the call and get the fee for that. Then, the destination phone gets picked up by the tower it's nearest to, no matter what the company is. Revenue-sharing. The network needs to be one big network, and the wireless companies are just ISP's.
  • Reply 94 of 124
    swiftswift Posts: 436member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by JDW View Post


    Sometimes I really like what I read on AppleInsider, and other times I think the article titles here begin to resemble that of MacCentral or CNN. Folks, I prefer the truth in all forms, including headline content. Since when did one man, a Democrat no less, become the entire US Government? Since when? Since AppleInsider wrote the headline, I guess? Well, thank God AppleInsider is not running the US Government. And folks, Ed Markey is a member of our Congress but he alone is not "the Government."



    He is the head of the appropriate committee, and the Democrats, as much as it seems a shock to you, are running the House and Senate. It's not quite accurate to call it "the U.S. government," but foreigners don't understand that we have divided branches of government, and even Americans don't seem to get it.



    I agree that the free market is best. What is bad is that the "free market" is being used as a monopoly. Imagine if the major participants of the Internet market unhooked from the legal restrictions of the Internet, prioritized the messages of their own ISP and charged you if you wanted to look up the "wrong" website that was hosted by a competitor, and then started giving away free computers only if you signed up with them for two or more years. That would be an immense tragedy. In the old days, sane Republicans would have recognized that for what it is: restraint of trade.
  • Reply 95 of 124
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by TBaggins View Post


    The worst Prez since Herbert Hoover. Tough to do, but he worked at it.





    .



    I agree he sucks, but Carter was the worst Prez. of all time. The War aside the country is in much better shape now then under Carter or even Ford for that matter. Clinton wasn't much better either, IMHO his poor management of foreign affairs is what lead to 9/11, and Bush's subsequent mismanagement.
  • Reply 96 of 124
    tbagginstbaggins Posts: 2,306member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Judgegavel View Post


    I agree [Bush] sucks, but Carter was the worst Prez. of all time. The War aside the country is in much better shape now then under Carter or even Ford for that matter.



    The prob is that you can't just sweep it under the rug by saying 'the war aside', 'cuz the war is HUGE. Half a trillion dollars, four years, thousands of American lives lost, tens of thousands wounded, and of course we have helped totally f*** up that country. The media is bad about focusing on it, but there are literally millions of Iraqi refugees who've fled the country.



    Additionally, Bush (and Cheney, and Rumsfeld) have 'Vietnamized' the US perhaps as badly as Vietnam itself did in the '70s, making us much less able to respond even if someone like an Iran or North Korea got really out of hand. We'll be feeling the effects for a long time to come, especially our poor beat-up military.



    And the corruption, the botched response to Katrina (where thousands more Americans died, this time at home), the pathological focus on politics and cronyism over competence, the endless kow-towing to the religious right on everything from stem cells to family planning to gay rights, the rampant budget deficits, the destruction of our national reputation via Abu Ghraib and Guatanamo and the secret black sites in Eastern Europe, the drag-assedness on global warming and renewable energy, the failure to do anything on immigration, the contempt for our American civil liberties and the law...



    Jesus H, you could go on for days about how much this administration sucks. It's actually exhausting. No, I remember Carter. He was ineffective, but this guy and his crew are definitely worse. And at least Carter has been a good ex-President with his charity work, Habitat for Humanity, etc.



    Somehow, I think Dubya is going to find a way to still suck once he's out of office. Hard as that is to do.



    .
  • Reply 97 of 124
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by vinea View Post


    Who's too f-ing stupid now? Other than meddling democrats of course?



    You?



    "Bipartisan members of Congress spoke out today to free the iPhone and other next generation hand-held computers from the grip of phone incumbents like AT&T and Verizon.



    During the hearing of the House Subcommittee on Telecommunications and the Internet, representatives from both sides of the aisle called for a more open wireless system where new innovations aren't held hostage to the competition-killing carriers that control the network.



    In what's been dubbed the "iPhone hearing" Chairman Ed Markey (D-Mass.) and "Chip" Pickering (R-Miss.) called for a different system - where wholesalers could compete and new applications and devices could be connected regardless of carrier.



    "The iPhone highlights both the promise and the problems with the wireless industry today," Rep. Markey said holding up before other members his newly acquired iPhone. "On the one hand, it demonstrates the sheer brilliance and wizardry of wireless engineering. On the other hand, the advent of the iPhone raises questions about the fact that a consumer can't use this phone with other wireless carriers."



    Markey highlighted myriad problems with our wireless marketplace, where "many consumers feel trapped having bought an expensive device or having been locked into a long-term contract with significant penalties for switching."



    Representative Pickering called for more openness in the marketplace stating that "openness is creating a wholesale market" for applications and services."
  • Reply 98 of 124
    jeffdmjeffdm Posts: 12,951member
    It would be nice to keep the politics out of this one, particularly the discussions of politicians not mentioned in the story.
  • Reply 99 of 124
    catman4d2catman4d2 Posts: 174member
    how about fuck the government... bunch of murdering criminals.
  • Reply 100 of 124
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by TBaggins View Post


    The prob is that you can't just sweep it under the rug by saying 'the war aside', 'cuz the war is HUGE..



    Actually I can, with regards to judging the presidency or the state of the country under him, the war is an entirely over blown issue the media and dare I say it Democrats like to focus on, and it's still only one issue that despite the medias hype does not effect most Americans' daily lives.



    The War itself should never be swept under the rug or downplayed, and Bush and co. have totally fucked it up.



    But that being said and my point is the country is in a much better place now then in the late 70's, and as much as a borderline retard Bush is, he has done a much better job than Carter, or Ford. Now the overall presidential legacy has much more to do with timing, history, and the entire cabinet than the individual man, but thats not how you nor the media portrays it.



    Yes this is now getting way off topic I apologize for my role in that.
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