Thursday, July 10, 2008

iPhone data price complaints off base

Now I'm not a fan of megalithic wireless operators. But the criticism of AT&T's pricing plan for the new iPhone 3G, especially the monthly cost for unlimited data, is missing the point.

The complaint, lodged by Walt Mossberg and others, goes something like this: "Yes, the new iPhone costs $200 less, but the unlimited data package costs $10 more per month. So after a contract of two years, you'll be out $40 compared to the first iPhone."

But the point is this. We are talking about the iPhone 3G. Its data rates are about three times faster than the old 2.5G EDGE technology on the first iPhone, according to Mossberg's tests.

Which means, minute-by-minute, you'll be getting more data (and thereby more value) from the iPhone 3G.

But there's more. When available bandwidth jumps, people use far more of the service. New applications become possible. Video, for example, is much more reasonable at 400kbps than at 56kps.

So perhaps the comment should be, "For pretty much the same total cost as the old phone, you get a new phone with three times the power and 10-15 times the application utility. Why not stop by an Apple store and pick one up?"

, , , , , , ,