iPhone Birthday – Xmas Wish List

September 12, 2007

in general

My daughters birthday falls in December each year. As a teenager it either a shopping spree or some new tech product; ipod, phone, computer etc. So I’m already preparing for the Birthday / Christmas wishes. Without talking about it I sense an iPhone request coming up. I see this coming even though she already has one of the coolest phones in school.

She runs around with an Nokia N73 which she’s had for a year. The camera (3 megapx and auto focus) adds to the joy that she gets from it. However after a year she doesn’t really use it for music (she did at first – but it doesn’t synch as easily as an ipod) and she doesn’t and won’t get an unlimited data plan on our budget. Her old ipod mini is tired out and she postponed getting a video over the summer.

I’ve been in the Apple stores and played with the iPhone for at least a couple of hours. I’ve watched people using them etc. I’m certain that my daughter would get more out the iPhone than her current device. The only other options that compete with extending and putting her on a WiFi connection are either more expensive Nokia N80 or Nokia N95 (both of which I use) and frankly not as effective for web browsing; music etc. While I’m like Stowe and his views on the N95 (a camera that is everything else) and the use that brings me…. most users  don’t have the technology interest or the “learning curve” perseverance to get the best use out of it. I know this for a certainty having had my whole family on Nokia Smartphones. They simply aren’t using the extra features and that is why Apple’s iPhone is going to infect my family and be expressed as “want it” by my kids.

The iPhone is enabling a social conversation around music, you tube, browsing etc. The screen is large enough and thus it is easy to teach others or show them exactly what’s cool. I’ve virtually never handed off my N95 and said listen to this. However I know I could hand off an iPhone and my friend etc will already know how to navigate my music. Similarly with the browser etc. iTunes has created a pre-trained user base for smarts and desire.

From my perspective the game has radically changed. A few years ago I asked Nokia. Motorola and others “What’s your Skype strategy?” That has been partially answered by all the WiFi phones they are launching and the new sites that Nokia is announcing as an internet company. In this rush forward its not always been made simpler. The applications that win on my mobile today are gmail, google reader, google maps, facebook, jajah, agilemessenger. Podcasting and YouTube etc while there are just not easy enough to use or never updated or if auto updated kills my battery life. The Skype question was just part of “where should you be going?”.

Apple’s iPhone price reduction upset a lot of people. I really doubt
Steve Jobs had preplanned it. However, as a strategic move it was
brilliant. He is now in a position to launch unlocked iPhones across
the globe at a price that undercuts all the NSeries phones. He doesn’t
yet have the channels of distribution in place. However, when an N73
retails for more than an iPhone you know a price cut is in order. There
is more going on here than just a price cut; it is disruptive strategy
at it’s best… and even the discussion will help to sell more iPhones.

The last barrier to adding an iPhone to my household was an AT&T service contract. Engadget reports today iUnlock released: the first free, open source iPhone SIM unlock software – Engadget. That’s good enough for me. I know by the time I have to buy it… I can run it on T-Mobile. I won’t require a new contract etc. She won’t get a data plan; however the wifi will bring in all the data she wants.

Now to see if my predicted request comes true. Plus will there be enough iPhones in stock at Christmas? My guess on stocks there will be. Something Apple understands better than all the other mobile operators and suppliers is Christmas Retail.  Their product assortment coming into  Xmas looks  unreal.  Apple stores may be the only ones that will be able to approach the claim that every family in America visited one in the lead up to Xmas.

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