What price an Aussie iPhone?

iPhone3G.jpgI guess we shouldn't complain -- Australians will get the new 3G iPhone on July 11, the earliest date that anyone will, and we get a choice of networks (Vodafone and Optus) which is more than the original iPhone ever boasted. But while US customers are promised a US$199 phone, both Optus and Vodafone are only saying that pricing details will be announced at a later date.

Vodafone says both prepay and contract plans will be available; Optus hasn't even got that level of detail, but does offer a site where you can pre-register your interest, and the option to pay $100 against the price to jump to the head of the queue. Do you honestly need a new phone that badly? (Vodafone is also planning a similar site at iphone.vodafone.com.au, though this isn't yet live.) Anyway, what's the bet that US$199 translates as something more than the $210-odd that current exchange rates would imply?


Comments

    I was going to purchase an iPhone (currently needing a new phone i figured i may as well as i was thinking of getting one eventually anyway).

    I will more than likely wait off for another month for the 3G version to be released in Australia. Although even though the exchange rate hits up the iPhone to calculate at approx $210 I'm still worried Vodafone and Optus will announce the iPhone to cost around $599. I guess time will tell

    I paid about AU $800 to get mine here and crack it open - so $600 would be expensive, but not ungodly. The thing I find raw is the contract obligations. With a cracked phone you are not beholden to a particular vendor.

    When my current unit is a few years old, or it died/smashes/et I'll get the 3g without hesitation.

    No iPhone from Three? I was counting on their competitive 3G data plans. I hope Vodafone and Optus can offer more than they currently do for the money. Compare:

    Optus: $4.95/10MB, $9.95/30MB $14.95/200MB
    http://personal.optus.com.au/web/ocaportal.portal?_nfpb=true&_pageLabel=Template_wRHS&FP=/personal/mobile/3gmobile/3grates&site=personal

    Vodafone: Offers conflicting prices, but 39.95 for 5GB isn't too bad - but they only offer that with a 3G mobile broadband modem. Maybe when the iPhone is released that will change.
    http://www.vodafone.com.au/personal/mobilebroadband/pricing/index.htm

    Three: $15 for 1Gb, with comparable pricing as you increase that.

    Perhaps if Vodafone keeps it's pricing it might be OK. But Optus will have to lift its game.

    Mind you guys, Steve Jobs did not demo the new iPhone video call capability and I seriously doubt it has front side camera at all. I can't find the info from the Tech Spec page on Apple.com.

    In other words, this iPhone has 3G speed (in Metropolitan 3G coverage area) but it won't come with a video call function like any other 3G phones on the market right now.

    I'm not going to pre-register when they can't even tell us what the final cost will be. But I've been hanging onto a lemon of a phone for a while in the hopes that it'd last me until the iPhone became available here, so I'll be closely following the news on this!

    If they price it similiar to the markup on Ipods, then it should come in around $250 - which would be acceptable in my eyes.

    I was talking to someone who works for a telco that also deals with optus, she said that the rumored price from optus is $250. But i personally doubt it with our tech prices here.

    I have been using my (jailbroken) iPhone since Christmas, and it is just the most beautiful piece of technology. I would jump for the 3G in a heartbeat. Unfortunately, there is not so much benefit that I get to give up the one I have. So I will stick with 2.5G and my hubby will jump in for a new one.

    Fingers crossed that restrictions on provider come off and I can cross-over to 2.0 and standard upgrades, at least. Does anyone have any info on that?

    Agree with Adrian. Although, a few things that do come to mind with the new iphone now that it's released has turned me off from the initial hype I got myself into before wwdc:
    1. no copy-paste-cut support
    2. no front-side camera
    3. no flash support (for web-browsing)
    4. no blue-tooth headphone support...

    i can live with no front-side camera and blue-tooth headphone, but not the rest... it's sad but i might have to wait a bit more before buying myself a new phone, even though the current iPhone is already mouth-watering...

    more then likely it will be $250 on a $59-$99 plan which would suck. $250-299 outright price would be nice

    Gotta show some concern when the Optus signon page where you can register interest for iPhone and Enter Your Credit Card is NOT even encrypted! No SLL Cert and it even claims its secure on the page. Beware until its fixed.

    Engadget says that during the Steve Jobs keynote he said:

    "The price is a maximum of $199 all around the world -- we're really, really excited about the new iPhone 3G."

    So there it is from the horse's mouth. By that reckoning it has to be about $210.

    People who follow Jobs more closely than I assure me that his take on "all around the world" sometimes equates to "east and west coast". Why would iPhone pricing have parity when iPods never have?

    I'd agree with Matt because I was pleasantly surprised when I saw Sir Jobs say "$199 all around the world".
    Given exchange rates (and different currencies), I don't know how you could give the same price across multiple countries. Even if it is US$199, is that based on exchange rates on July 11?

    None of you seem to be getting the point - that's not how phone plans tend to work over here.
    In the US, if you walk into an AT&T (or Verizon, or Sprint etc) store, all the phones are advertised as "$50 on a 24 month plan" or "$199 on a 24 month plan" or "$499 on a 24 month plan". When was the last time you had to pay for a phone here and still go on a contract?

    The way the plan works in the US is AT&T subsidize the iPhone. AT&T will pay apple a much higher cost, $500, just as an example, and then they sell the iPhone to you at a lower, subsidised price since you'll be making calls with them for the next 24 months, so they expect to get a return on their investment.

    In Australia however, the standard practice is for carriers to subsidise the ENTIRE phone, which is why you always see phones advertised as "Free on a $49 Cap over 24 months". (Or you can usually get it on a cheaper plan, but pay additional handset repayments each month).

    Generally you also have another option of paying for the phone upfront (therefore paying the actual cost the telco paid to apple, eg $500) and then you're not on a contract and could cancel from day 1. The telco doesn't mind, because you paid full price for the phone.

    So the $199 figure doesn't really translate very well into the cost of the phone over here, because our plans are structured quite differently.

    One method is looking at other phones from AT&T that cost $199 on a 24 month plan, and then see what sort of plans it's available on here in Australia. That's a little difficult though, as many models we have in Australia aren't actually available in the US.

    Another way to try and figure it out - with Steve's remark of it being no more than $199 around the world, maybe you could guess that over a 24 month plan the handset repayments on the cheapest plan, ie $29 cap may be $10 a month, so it will probably be free on a $49 cap.

    My guess? I think it will be free on a $69/$79 cap.

    I agree with Jono... I think we will probably see some plans with the phone for free. The main concern I still have is data plans. Neither optus or vodafone have very good data plans but hopefully they will have some specific ones for the iPhone as it is advertised as the internet in your pocket. My guess is it will be like the blackberry plans

    Something all of you have missed:
    go back and listen to that quote again... the WHOLE quote... you will clearly note that Steve says "And in almost everyone of these countries the price is a maximum of $199."
    It's at about 1:40:10 into the keynote...
    Sorry guys...

    Okay... first of all, I work in an Optus store and we're waiting on more info ourselves... Typically when a new phone is released from Nokia, Ericsson, etc. we will get pricing information about 2 weeks ahead of time; both outright pricing and which plans it will be free on.

    In the case of the iPhone 3G they will probably send all stores updates in our internal bulletins as well as the standard updates along with the rest of the pricing. Right now the easiest way to keep on top of things is to get your contact details to a rep in-store so they can call you when the first order comes in and can probably hang onto one for you at least for 24hrs (I don't tend to put much faith in pre-ordering myself).

    As to the objections about the "www.optusiphone.com.au" site not running as a secure site, I have to agree that it is stupidly designed, but what they have done is inserted a HTTPS iframe (to https://secure.adviceconnect.com.au) within an unencrypted page... so you are 'safe', or as safe as any online transaction you might conduct through your computer might be.

    Now, with regards to the phone itself... personally I NEVER get the 'latest and greatest' phone available, as even with the major providers like Nokia who have been in the game for a decade or more, often the first batch of a new phone will have multiple software bugs and possibly design faults that don't get ironed out till the first or second revision.

    That said, Apple might prove me wrong in this instance. This 3G iPhone is one of only two phones I'm considering upgrading to in the next couple of months (the other is the upcoming HTC Diamond - partly due to the fact that since we started carrying HTC phones, they've had something like 80-90% fewer warranty returns than any other brand, and they know how to design a phone, too).

    Last but not least, the data pricing has changed dramatically over the past 6-8 months and I expect it will continue to do so; it is probably also worth getting your hands on an ABN (in some cases, this is possible through an authorization letter from work or partner if you don't hold your own) since business data plans have already been revamped even if they aren't being publicly advertised yet. Old biz data pricing (available from http://smb.optus.com.au/web/ocaportal.portal?_nfpb=true&_pageLabel=Template_woRHS&FP=/smallbusiness/mobile/3gmobile&site=smallbusiness) is $5=5MB, $15=30MB, $25=50MB, $35=75MB. This was last changed around 8-9 months ago I believe.
    In contrast, the new pricing is based off the current Optus Wireless Broadband pricing, available here: http://smb.optus.com.au/web/ocaportal.portal?_nfpb=true&_pageLabel=Template_wRHS&FP=/smallbusiness/internet/wireless&site=smallbusiness
    which is MUCH nicer, with 1GB/2GB/6GB at $20/$35/$50 respectively. :)

    - Matthew

    P.S: I'm not an employee of Optus directly (stores are franchised) - nor do my opinions and advice come from Optus. I'm just trying to help with what I know, this is not a press release or anything. ;)

    I used to work for Optus and they never told us anything about pricing until the day before (or on the day).

    The thing that gives me hope is that the iphone will be offered on prepaid with Optus and Voda, and i've never seen a prepaid phone more than $330 for sale. There just is no market for that.

    I think that Optus will have a reasonable price for the prepaid phone- say $210-250(8gb), but they will try and entice people to plans by coming up with a special plan that includes data or something. It'd be great if they match the blackberry plan $79 cap, $300 inc calls and unlimited data, push email etc...

    I know the price of apple products in Australia are always higher than those in the USA even after converting currencies, but there really isn't any possible way that Apple/Optus/Vodafone could seriously ask Australian consumers to pay more than AUD$300. If they do then that would be a mark up of over US$80! Now that doesn't really sit well with me, and I am sure would not sit well with anyone in Australia. I am definately hanging out for this phone, and from what I can tell Apple is trying to make their mark by offering a cut price Smartphone. All I can say is that I believe the Australian consumers will lash back at this product if the cost is over AUD$300. I seriously don't see how this could happen, it really can't be that much more costly to get the product to Australia than compared to the USA, and tax on this item to import really can't be that much either! Here is hoping for a product under or very close to AUD$300!!!

    We've put our deposit on an Ozzie iPhone -- but all its got us so far is loads of emails telling us how to nasally insert our iPhone -- not when it will come or how much is will COST!

    I rang Three today and they are bring out the iPhone as well. So there is only stupid Telstra left I guess who would go with them ?

    In other news, the Vodafone site is now operational, it seems. ;)

    - Matthew

    It would be crazy to see Optus have the iPhone for $199 or $250 on prepaid. Think about how much companies like Nokia and Sony Ericsson would suffer, if this was the case I wouldn't be suprised to see the N95 8gb around the same price mark.

    Unfortunately I think that we can expect a prepaid iPhone for around $400 - $600.

    @ Dave iPhone in Australia only comes out with Singtel (Optus) and Vodafone, not 3

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