The iPhone 3GS goes on sale in Australia today, meaning Telstra has finally revealed its pricing and Apple itself enters the fray with phone-only packages.
Telstra has largely maintained its existing iPhone pricing plan structure with the new model, though upfront costs to buy the original 3G model have been reduced. The simple version? If you want an iPhone 3GS with no up-front cost, you need to sign up for the $150 a month iPhone plan for the 32GB version or the $100 plan for the 16GB model (24-month plans in each case). That makes Telstra the most expensive option if you want a “free” iPhone (compared to Optus and Vodafone).
While its 3G network coverage is the most extensive, the relatively small data bundles that come with the plans mean you’re likely to spend extra if you want to use features like tethering . Customers can also sign up for the phone on general Next G Cap plans as well as iPhone-specific options, and that option is now also available with the original iPhone.
Apple itself is also offering the iPhone via its retail stores as an upfront purchase, which looks like it might be the cheapest option if you don’t want to be tied to a specific plan. While Apple’s site doesn’t actually offer any prices right now, Nick at Gizmodo reports costs of $879 (16GB) and $1040 (32GB), based on what customers who have contacted stores have been told.