iPhone 5 release date: Prepaid is the next venture?
June 4th, 2012, 4:35 A.M. — Cricket’s new iPhones the hint of the iPhone 5′s possible future? Is it possible that the iPhone 5 will join more than three US wireless carriers on release date?
So apparently, Cricket is the newest iPhone partner of Apple, allowing the wireless carrier to sell cheap iPhone 4 and iPhone 4S. The impact? Well, for consumers like me, it is a good news because the competition will probably pull the iPhone’s price tags down in contiguous USA. The bad news? Well, for other wireless providers largely due to aggressive prices of smaller carriers, giants like Verizon or ATT must stay competitive, either on pricing or network coverage and quality.
For comparison, the iPhone 4 and the iPhone 4S of Cricket will be the cheapest, starting from the small player’s iPhone 4 (2010) with 8GB storage and about 6GB of usable storage, priced at $400, while the iPhone 4S (2011) with 16GB storage for $500 each. These phones will be carrier-locked or phones that are capable of using Cricket’s network only, plus the phones will run on a CDMA network, so the iPhone 4 is permanently locked on Cricket. In short, your ATT SIM card will not work with the Cricket iPhone 4S, however, you can jailbreak it and insert your own SIM. But we’re not a fan of jailbreaking, by the way, because we believe that we need to “give money where money is due.”
Cricket’s iPhones are eligible for the carrier’s $55 per month, no-contract plan, so no 2-year contract agreement like the big four’s rule, and the cheap monthly prepaid plan includes unlimited calls, texts and data. It is worth noting that they’re not actually unlimited, especially the data plan because according to Ars Technica, Cricket will throttle iPhones that will consume more than 2.3GB data.
Apple Stores and the company’s online store are selling unlocked iPhone 4S and iPhone 4. The cheapest iPhone 4S is the 16GB model with an asking price of $650 each, while the most expensive is the 64GB model sporting the tag price of $850. Compared to Crickets, they’re arguably expensive. Other third-party retailers are also selling unlocked iPhones with some offering cheaper price tags.
So, is the prepaid universe the next big expansion of the iPhone? And what’s the goal of Apple with the new deal with Cricket and the growing number of stores that offer unlocked iPhones? The answer, using my functioning brain, is probably Android and Windows Phone, Apple’s aggressive smartphone rivals. So basically, unlocked Android phones are more accessible than iPhones. In fact, Google is currently selling its high-end Galaxy Nexus by Samsung online with HSPA+ support for $399 only, while other Android manufacturers have partnered with online and physical retail stores for their new products, like the HTC One X for example currently priced at $550 each, and the Windows Phone-powered Lumia 800 for $450 to $500 only.
Another wireless carrier worth mentioning is T-Mobile USA, the iPhone-less carrier which focuses on Android to stay relevant. This year, T-Mobile will retail the Samsung Galaxy S3 and other high-end Android devices, with no mention of the iPhone. Is it possible that T-Mobile is the next stop of the popular Apple smartphone brand? Let’s see.
Apple, now, needs to be more aggressive to stay relevant. This year, analysts believe that Apple will launch a new iPhone, the long-rumored iPhone 5 reportedly with a larger display, a new processor, a new design and probably with Long Term Evolution or 4G here in United States. Of course, Apple’s iPhone 5 is still expected to support HSPA+ for other wireless providers and other countries that do not support LTE yet, like a vast majority of territories in Europe, and the growing markets in Asia-Pacific like China, the Philippines, and Indonesia where customers are willing to pay $600 for an unlocked smartphone.
This year is very exciting, not only for the investors of Apple, but also for the consumers and retailers because the intense competition is arguably improving the prices of the smartphones, plus the quality of the devices. One analyst thinks that Apple and Samsung will grab major-major smartphones shares this year, citing the iPhone 5 that will probably convince old iPhone owners to upgrade, and Samsung’s new Galaxy S3 smartphone which ships with Google’s latest Android Ice Cream Sandwich operating system, plus the tech giant’s new Exynos quad-core system-on-a-chip and a new 4.8-inch Super AMO-LED display with more pixels per inch.
Credit Card Friendly Price Watch: Subsidized iPhone 4S is still more affordable than unlocked iPhone 4S, but you need to examine your voice and text activities, as well as your 3G data RPM or rate per month to see if you need a bigger monthly plan, or you’re fine with a cheaper prepaid or postpaid line. If you’re not outgoing and access the internet using your home WiFi and/or office WiFi, you probably need a 1GB/per month data plan only. 1GB vs 10GB comparison is a no-brainer.
Article source: http://www.popherald.com/apple-i-phone-cricket-prepaid-17529/