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The Most Underwhelming MacWorld Expo Ever? Yeah

I don't care about the Apple TV. I don't care about the iPhone because I can't get Cingular service in my area (and, from what I have heard, they suck lately anyway). And how does "approval takes two months" mean June anyway?

But mainly I'm deeply disapopinted that the iPhone is available only for Cingular. Apple could have sold a trillion unlocked units at $799 or probably even $999. Instead, people are somehow forced to decide between what I agree is a truly revolutionary phone and their current contracts, network coverage, etc.? Why not let all the carriers sell the phones and sell them with their own contract extensions or agreements. Why go "long-term" and "exclusive" with Cingular???

Deeply disappointed.

Total out of pocket today and, aside from iWork and iLife upgrades I suspect we'll see soon, total in the next six months: $0.

20 Responses to "The Most Underwhelming MacWorld Expo Ever? Yeah"

  1. I'm going to do everything in my power to get my hands on an iPhone. I have used every major smartphone available (mostly unavailable here in Canada or even the continent) and have been sorely disappointed every time. My last phone was a Sony M600i I bought from a Chinese importer. After dripping a bit of water on the touchscreen it stopped working... 2 months after I bought it. In the meantime I'm back to using a Cingular 8125 I bought on eBay.

    I have a feeling the iPhone will be unlocked in record time. People will be falling over themselves to use it on other networks.

  2. Phil said on January 9, 2007:

    I have a feeling the iPhone will be unlocked in record time. People will be falling over themselves to use it on other networks.

    Yeah, and that's my only hope. Then I have to hope Cellular One has a decent data plan or something (unlikely - they're just GPRS currently).

  3. I agree with Phil, I really want this phone. And one would have to assume Cingular forced Apple to make them exclusive for a least the interim, but why why why didn't they let this thing out into the wild on more networks?

    All the needed-help-from-the-carrier features are cool, but I'm not going to drop $200 with Verizon to break my contract just to spend another $600 on a phone with a company that has sub-par coverage in Iowa. Plus, my Moto Q isn't bad enough to warrant an $800+ expenditure. I guess I'll wait for the hackers to do their thing.

    I do need to have an AppleTV, though. Hooking the laptop to the TV is getting old.

  4. Myztik Jenz said on January 9, 2007:

    And one would have to assume Cingular forced Apple to make them exclusive for a least the interim

    Apple has a "long-term exclusive" arrangement with Cingular. That doesn't sound like "interim" to me.

    I also wonder how Apple is going to sell the things. Are they going to check to see if you have a contract? Are they going to sell these in stores and sign people up for new cellular contracts? Sounds like a headache waiting to happen. Cell phone companies are widely despised - Apple "acting" like one to customers who will go back to the Apple store to complain about their bill is a headache waiting to happen.

  5. Not only does Cingular suck as a mobile carrier, but their plan charges are pretty outrageous. With the iPhone, you'd want the unlimited data plan, since most of the stuff you'd be doing with the iPhone would be data related - You'll be paying a pretty penny for that. Plus, you're locked in with a 2 year plan -That's BS for the QoS you get. You're right, sell it unlocked and for a little more and it'll be a much easier sell.

    I don't like the 5 hour battery for phone use though, that's pretty harsh. 16 hours for music only, but if I had one I'd be using it more for the phone than the music player (who uses, for instance, the Verizon Chocolate for just music anyways?) Also, no 3G. But the phone does look good.

  6. I have to agree that releasing the iPhone ONLY to Cingular really sucks. I have been with Sprint for 7 years, without ever missing a payment, and paying for a lot of features. Sprint knows me, and i get what i want from them. I dont want to trade all that in and go to Cingular's sub-par (for my area at least) service JUST for the iPhone... as slick as it looks.

    Maybe i'll just stubbornly cross my fingers that a CDMA/EVDO version will eventually be released (MacWorld '09 anyone?)

    The AppleTV on the other hand... I use the iTS for Lost, Grey's Anatomy, and The Office. I dont pay for TV otherwise... and plugging in the Laptop (now that my old 450mhz G4 can't handle the higher resolutions) is getting old. I'd like a Remote, and 802.11N to just take care of it for me... and the price is right.

  7. Ugh, long-term sounds awful. I am curious as well about how people will purchase these. According to reports it will be available at Cingular and Apple stores.

    I just hope the phone importers can get their hands on them early. I've heard that Cingular doesnt sell their devices without a plan, but I'm holding a Cingular 8125 (ugly) in my hand right now, and bought it without any kind of premium on the price (from eBay). And the Sony M600i can't be bought in North America, but I didn't think the price was outrageous ($300usd), bought it online at hi-mobile.net.

  8. I was really surprised they didn't talk about Leopard, iLife or any Mac stuff at all. They redesigned and relaunched their Airport Base Station and it didn't come up once (from what I was reading, I haven't watched the stream yet).

    Yes, the phone is huge news, but leaving out all the Mac stuff, that's just weird.

  9. I'm more disappointed not to see a higher capacity iPod with the full screen. That's all i want. I already have a phone with a recently re-upped 2-year contract.

  10. I'm guessing getting Cingular on board to do the funky voicemail and what not was what pushed the exclusivity deal, and I imagine Cingular would probably want to guarantee they are going to get a return on that investment.

    I'll be interested to see if the touch screen tech makes it back to a future hard drive based iPod. Maybe it's cost prohibitive to include right now.

  11. I am not surprised that they went exclusive as that seems to be how the phone business works.

    The iPhone does look fantastic from where I sit, but doesn't first gen screen navigation make anyone else nervous to shell out the big bucks?

    It should definitely raise expectations and cause competitors to take notice!

    Unlocking the phones will come (probably once enters foreign markets)

  12. I'm more disappointed that they didn't announce a "sister" ipod to the iphone. I don't need the "all in one" unit right now. I'm content with my phone the way it is (even if it is the SLVR L7). Cingular contract aside, Apple is in the business of making money. Cingular has the biggest data/voice network (especially now that it's going to be AT&T again) that Apple needed to tap for the "gizmos" that are featured in the phone.

    I just wanted a ipod that looked like that, worked like that with 100gb HDD. Rip out all that fancy stuff like Wifi/bluetooth/phone and it could make the cost factor. Leave the touch screen for those of us that want a bigger screen without controls. Disappointing is 4GB and 8GB... you tell me how many videos or movies your going to get on that with HD? Not that many.

    Time will tell. I really expected 10.5 launch time frame, but maybe we'll see another "event" in the coming months.

  13. Even if they didn't have an exclusive with Cingular, who could you use it with? The iPhone is a GSM phone. T-Mobile and Cellular One are the only other GSM providers in the US. All the people complaining about Cingular's coverage are going to be really disappointed with T-Mobile's small network and perhaps CellOne's.

    Verizon and Sprint are CDMA, the iPhone physically can't work with them.

    The rest of the world is GSM so all of the money and innovation is put into the development of GSM phones. I don't think we'll see a CDMA iPhone as it probably just isn't worth it to put all that development into it just for relatively small market.

  14. Surprise, but not disappointed about the lack of Mac items at something called MWSF. As for the iPhone...

    (1) Very surprised at the product name.

    (2) Never forget the Jobs style of presentation. The cellular phone industry is fairly entrenched, and full of dissatisfied customers. I'm sure Cingular - like all providers - played hardball.

    There are quite a few unique details about the hardware/software on this phone. It was ready to go... so I'm betting SJ was simply doing what he had to - for now - and simply framed his presentation to overlook the things he had to swallow in order to get this product out.

    (3) Again the cellular phone industry is entrenched, and full of dissatisfied customers. The former point makes it difficult for a new entry. The latter almost guarantees a market. Sound familiar? That would be the music industry 5 years ago. Sure, there are some differences (going with one provider is an obvious one).

    But 5 years ago Apple couldn't dictate things like a 99 cent per song price. The music industry didn't care back then - but they sure do now. Problem is, Apple CAN dictate price nowadays. I think you'll see some interesting things happening once Apple establishes themself in the cell phone market - and trust me, with the drool factor of the iPhone, they will.

  15. Aaron is right. As a GSM phone, there really wasn't anyone else that they could go with. Also, Apple was not going to develop a non-GSM phone first and cut out the European and Asian markets. As a Verizon subscriber, it does suck...but I'll take Verizon's service and coverage over Cingular's any day.

    The only hope is that there is some language in the contract so that Apple can develop a CDMA version for the other millions of US cell phone users. I'm sure Apple's (and Cingular's) hope is that this will drive those Verizion and other CDMA users to GSM.

    The question ultimately will be: coverage or convenience?

  16. [...] Beyond that, it’s Cingular. Only Cingular for the foreseeable future. Erik is disappointed, and I don’t blame him. I’m okay with that since Cingular is my carrier, but I see trouble ahead with the data plans. As I pointed out in a post on Web Worker Daily, Cingular currently has 21 data plans. It’s confusing enough as it is to pick the right plan for the right phone. Chances are that Cingular will have a data plan for the iPhone that’s at least as expensive as the most expensive PDA plan and folks will be complaining that they can’t use the cheaper smartphone plan. What about people who only want to use the phone with wifi and don’t want a data plan at all? [...]

  17. It' a cool tool. No question. But really... two years with a carrier that's less than reliable here in the NY market? I understand the technological rationale for the alliance. But I think the pundits who said that entering the cell phone market was a whole different deal than the iPod were right.

    This is NOT going to be the next big thing in cell phones. And I'm greatly disappointed. Because it is a great device and I am an Apple fanatic and would have loved giving them $500 as homage. But, with Cingular, I won't.

  18. Ten bucks says the iPhone doesn't have a "vibrate" mode.

    And hey, the battery is sealed in. Dead iPhone battery? Buy another and re-up for two years. I wonder if they'll even make it two years…

  19. The actual phone itself is very exciting with all of its features but if the call quality is still crap (which it is with almost every cell phone out there), it's just a pretty video iPod with internet capabilities. I would pay double for a phone if I knew the phone would have landline voice quality and stability and no other features.

    I live in Erie and I have Cingular. I've had them when I lived in other places (namely Ohio) and I've never had a problem with them. Mind you, I have heard horror stories. I can't imagine having that phone in a dense wi-fi enviroment will make Cingular particularly happy. No data rates charges.

    Speaking of the wi-fi, if the phone is running OS X, will there be appilcations for it? If there is going to be, hello Skype, you have some work to do.

    I didn't even think about the battery thing at all. That could be brutal.

  20. How are the going to do this in europe? Here you are able to use any phone you like. and I am not worry I think they will crack the phone in a day!


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