Flipping Americans and their rubbishy mobile ecosystem!
I’ve said it. I feel better already.
America’s mobile industry, like many Western counterparts, is heavily invested in the handset subsidy model. This is where an operator’s CFO takes an $800 handset and makes it “feel” like it costs $99. Or $29. Or $200. Whatever. The rest of the cost of the handset is integrated into the 2-year service agreement.
Since Nokia’s Lumia 900 launched over the weekend, I’ve been reading lots of analyst reports and news posts describing how delighted they are at the price point.
It is NOT a $100 handset. Buy it off the shelf and it’s at least £500 or around $700-800.
It winds me up. It really does.
Still, I do understand what they’re on about. A Galaxy Note from AT&T will set you back $300 up front and a 16GB iPhone 4S will require $199 immediately. So yeah, I can see why the Lumia debuting at $100 has got a lot of people excited. I find it rather frustrating that it’s all down to the initial payment — as if the market is doing its best to ensure the consumer fixates on that, instead of the heinous 24-month contract with punishing break clauses.