Linked by Thom Holwerda on Fri 17th Aug 2012 22:48 UTC
PDAs, Cellphones, Wireless I always see The Netherlands - my home country - as a small, easily graspable version of other, larger and more important western countries and even the west as a whole. In light of this, Tweakers.net's Arnoud Wokke points to a very interesting report about the Dutch telecommunications market. This reports notes a trend that, if present in the rest of the world, could have serious effects for phone makers.
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Deliberate Distortion?
by JokeyRhyme on Sat 18th Aug 2012 00:09 UTC
JokeyRhyme
Member since:
2010-05-28

I've read elsewhere that the carrier subsidies and plans in the USA tend to make the iPhone look as affordable as other options (or make those other options looks as expensive).

In EU and elsewhere, there is otherwise a significant difference in total cost of ownership, with Android devices tending to be quite a bit cheaper than the iPhone.

I wonder how much of this is part of secret contracts between Apple and the USA carriers? Would Apple enjoy the same lead it has in USA without these deals?

Reply Score: 4

RE: Deliberate Distortion?
by Morgan on Sun 19th Aug 2012 10:06 in reply to "Deliberate Distortion?"
Morgan Member since:
2005-06-29

Well the Hipster to Average Joe ratio in the U.S. is currently somewhere around 6:1, so there is a built in iPhone market right there. ;)

All joking aside, the only time I've seen an iPhone go for $0 on contract is a refurbished "last year's" model. All new iPhones on the four major U.S. carriers have some cash due up front, and always have to my knowledge. In fact, the first generation on AT&T was a whopping $499 for the 8GB model, and when I got mine a couple of months before the launch of the 3G, I still had to pay that $499 and had to sign a contract extension! It was the first and last iPhone I owned, as I found it to be extremely lacking in every regard except as an iPod, which the person I eventually sold it to intended to use it as.

Anyway, I do think there are some major differences behind the scenes when it comes to the Apple/carrier relationships versus the other manufacturer relationships. It's one reason that we see Android phones with far superior hardware compared to the iPhone going for as low as $49 on contract.

Another major factor of course, is what I alluded to in my opening line: Image means a lot to the younger crowd here. Having an iPhone that does half the things a cheaper Android or even WP7 phone does is nothing compared to the status symbol that the great Apple devices provide. Teens and twentysomethings can be quite vocal in their contempt for what they consider a "loser's phone" or "geek's phone". Combine that with the prevalence of Apple products in general among the music and movie industry icons, and you have a bona fide Cult of Apple situation.

Reply Parent Score: 4

RE[2]: Deliberate Distortion?
by ze_jerkface on Sun 19th Aug 2012 23:37 in reply to "RE: Deliberate Distortion?"
ze_jerkface Member since:
2012-06-22

There is another factor which is the private offer.

At some point I was getting out of cycle iPhone offers from AT&T. They offered $15 for the latest version if I switched to a data plan. There was never an Android offer, it was always iPhone.

You can also get a good offer if you claim that Verizon/Tmobile is trying to court you. Those 50 and 100 dollar phone fees will disappear real fast, especially if you plan on getting more than the basic plan.

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE[2]: Deliberate Distortion?
by zima on Fri 24th Aug 2012 23:59 in reply to "RE: Deliberate Distortion?"
zima Member since:
2005-07-06

Another major factor of course, is what I alluded to in my opening line: Image means a lot to the younger crowd here. Having an iPhone that does half the things a cheaper Android or even WP7 phone does is nothing compared to the status symbol that the great Apple devices provide. Teens and twentysomethings can be quite vocal in their contempt for what they consider a "loser's phone" or "geek's phone". Combine that with the prevalence of Apple products in general among the music and movie industry icons, and you have a bona fide Cult of Apple situation.

Funny how's that from a place which supposedly prides itself on consumer choices...
(but then, it also doesn't seem to notice a paradox of cherishing choices ...while limiting its political debate to two-sides popularity contest & false dichotomies, discouraging thorough debates)

Anyway, don't those "teens and twentysomethings" realise what kind of image they really project?
(BTW, I was a kind of Apple supporter and promoter for some time ...but I stopped when, during the last few years, large part of Apple crowd lost any dignity - I guess due to suddenly them being "into" an actually successful company; I just don't want to be associated with that kind of people)

Edited 2012-08-25 00:18 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE: Deliberate Distortion?
by bassbeast on Mon 20th Aug 2012 21:38 in reply to "Deliberate Distortion?"
bassbeast Member since:
2007-11-11

Its true, here in the USA nobody buys their phones and with the carrier subsidies you are usually looking at $100-$199 for just about any decent smartphone. Its only in the last 6 months that things have started to change a little and that's only because Walmart has been heavily advertising its $120 Android phone with their $50 a month unlimited plan.

But even with Walmart getting into the game there is this...well stigma for want of a better word...around those that aren't on a plan, because buying your own phone and pay as you go has been strictly the realm of the poor here in the USA.

Reply Parent Score: 2