Still not cheaper

Omar Shahine on 

To be honest, I have an iPod Touch right now and I actually consider that the music playing experience sucks pretty bad when compared to a Zune or an old skool iPod. There is simply no replacement for having hard buttons to control audio and the whole screen flip thing is annoying.

And while I am at it, iTunes has turned into a slow bloated buggy application that I can’t stand to use any more… and the new Zune Player kicks its butt. Apple needs to throw away the Windows code base and start over with something that is actually a Windows App and not as terrible as QuickTime on Windows.

But anyway, it won’t change the fact that I have $400 earmarked for my iPhone v2.

An excellent read. A case study in how Apple makes smart people willingly and knowingly make ill-advised buying decisions with eyes wide open.

But this is my favorite part:

BTW, the new iPhone isn’t cheaper and if you think so then you can’t do the math.


10 thoughts on “Still not cheaper

  1. The cost is $40 higher over 2 years, but you are getting more for the money (faster speed, GPS, etc). Iphone users use a ton of data since they are loading full webpages and not stripped down mobile sites, and this will only increase with a 3G connection and GPS, it makes perfect sense that they would need to increase the price of data plans. I am not an Apple fanboy in the least (this is the first Apple product I’ve owned other than the first generation ipod shuffle I won at a work function, which ironically enough died literally within days of the warranty expiring), but I like the iphone because the UI beats the pants off every other phone I’ve tried, the ipod features are far superior to the mp3 player functionality on every other phone I’ve tried, and it’s generally just a really nice phone. Why is it an “ill-advised” decision to buy something you really like and that you feel is superior to the competition?

    Omar speculates that buying the phone will not go smoothly, but it is just that: speculation. He is also incorrect that Apple said “you don’t need 3G.” They said that 3G chips drained the battery too quickly, and that once that was resolved they’d come out with a 3G iphone.

    I don’t know why you’re so concerned with this; you’ve made only 15 posts in the month of June, and 2 of them are about the new iphone. Yes, the total cost of ownership over the life of the contract increased, but that includes additional functionality, and the original iphone data plans were already a good deal cheaper than data plans on comparable phones, this just brings them more in line with the others.

    I also wonder why this one guy’s opinion on the inferiority of the iphone/ipod touch UI and itunes is meaningful at all. Lots of people think it works just great (including me, itunes handles my 30,000 track mp3 library with ease and has a user-friendly UI, I’ve tried literally just about every media player out there, and have come back to itunes for my day to day music needs. It has its flaws, but it works for me).

    Quite frankly, I’m not even sure why I took the time to write all of this, because no one should care what others want to buy. Find the phone that works for you, who cares what the hell anyone else uses/likes/dislikes? I just can’t figure out why you have this hostility towards the iphone, and why you think smart people are buying it if it is such a bad decision.

  2. Aaron,

    I think what Ed doesn’t like is the sneaky “new lower price” in bold and “new higher monthly rate” hidden in the background – coming from a company that likes to portray itself as “the good guys”. Too many quotations marks, I know :-). And then people lap it up and are going on about how its now affordable…it isn’t, it’s as you say, more features for a higher price.

    Anyway, I’ve bought three iPods and use iTunes. I’ve always like the features, and it’s actually not that bad now that I have a 3 GHz quadcore to throw at it. Thankfully, under Vista it uses the OS titlebar buttons instead of those silly small things it foists on us under XP.

  3. Aaron, Greg’s right. Specifically as to your comments:

    “I don’t know why you’re so concerned with this; you’ve made only 15 posts in the month of June, and 2 of them are about the new iphone.”

    You do realize that about 50% of what’s been written in the month of June on the Internet has been about the iPhone?

    “I just can’t figure out why you have this hostility towards the iphone,”

    Who said I have a hostility toward it? I bought one for my wife. She loves it. I won;t buy one for me, because it doesn’t work with my Exchange Server (yet). And I really have to agree with Omar that the iTunes software is just crap. Every time I sit down at my wife’s PC to show her how to do something with the iPhone I just want to scream at the iTunes software. But the phone itself is very nice. Expensive, but nice.

  4. Won’t be buying a iPhone. Had no urge for v1 and no urge for v2. There is nothing there for me. I had an iPod Touch and returned it. It was crap. The music controls aweful, the web browsing terrible. Some strange bug with the display too that I need to shut it down and turn it off, but had to wait for the display to look correct.

    No thank you!

  5. I agree that iTunes is horrible, but what’s with slamming QuickTime. QuickTime’s video quality is ridiculously better than anything else out there. I can’t remember a single time I’ve ever seen QuickTime crash. Every Real or Windows Media video I see seems to be the size of a postage stamp, buffers forever and plays at low resolution. iTunes is cruddy, but QuickTime is outstanding.

    I held off on the intial iPhone because it was just too expensive knowing that a 3G model would come out in the next year. I’m buying an iPhone 3G as soon as I can. For me, it’s all about the mobile browsing experience. I don’t know how many times I’ve been out somewhere and wanted to look something up (directions, a restaurant’s phone number, some obscure fact) and haven’t been able to.

  6. I have yet to install iTunes on my Windows PC because I’ve read so many criticisms of it.

    THAT’s why I care (selectively) what other people buy and what they think of it. It saves me from spending time evaluating stuff that I would end up rejecting.

    Omar’s article was on-target about Jobs’ showmanship. I like Jobs’ presentation and I’m amused by his chutzpah. But I prefer to keep him (and his hype) at arms-length.

  7. And why is it not cheaper? In an interview in Tuesday’s Wall Street Journal, AT&T wireless CEO Ralph de la Vega said “It seems like $199 is the right kind of price point to get significant mass-market adoption. It’s going to impact earnings in 2008 and 2009 in a negative way, but will turn very profitable in the long term. We generate a lot of revenue from iPhone users, about twice as much as other customers.

  8. Carl: I’d have to disagree with your comment that “QuickTime’s video quality is ridiculously better than anything else out there.” Or actually, I think it’s the case of asking the wrong question.

    Video quality depends 90% on the bitrate used to encode it (more bits => looks better) and 10% on the codec (e.g. MPEG-4 can squeeze more quality out of the same bits than MPEG-2); the container format (MOV, WMV, AVI) and the program you use to play it (QuickTime, WMP) really have nothing to do with it.

    That being said, I agree that in my experience QuickTime has been more stable than RealPlayer or WMP. But my favorite video player is Media Player Classic (Google it).

  9. I recently picked up a new phone with a contract extension — a Nokia that has music-player support, Bluetooth, etc. — and decided to try using it as a substitute for my recently-dead music player. The number of things it did not do, like support playlists, were not egregious enough for me to go out and drop that much more money on an entirely separate device. It’s a case of “good enough for me.”

    For me, an iPhone has never entered the picture. Everything I’ve seen of the iPhone tells me that it’s really only good when you have the rest of the Apple ecosystem to complement it. (And there’s also the fact that I have a bad tendency to drop my phones and then step on them…or worse.)

    As far as QuickTime goes, I’ve had mixed experiences with it; I don’t understand why even on my quad-core machine with 3GB RAM it still takes forever to open. (I suspect it’s doing one of those things where it’s waiting on something to happen, then times out and gets on with its business, but Apple doesn’t have much of a track record for writing good Windows software IMO.)

  10. BTW, the new iPhone isn’t cheaper and if you think so then you can’t do the math.

    … or lives in another country: According to the german newspaper Die Welt the iPhone 3G will be in fact much cheaper than the current model. At least here in Germany.

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