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For Apple (AAPL), the transition from the 2G (or 2.5G) iPhone to the 3G iPhone is a tricky one.We know the new model is coming sometime in 2008. Steve Jobs hinted as much in September, and AT&T’s (T) Randall Stephenson confirmed it last month.
The problem for Apple is that it must get formal FCC approval before it releases any new radio-based device. Such applications are public documents, which makes it hard to keep a new cellphone secret for very long.
Jobs unveiled the original iPhone six months before it shipped. If he announces the 3G iPhone ahead of time, he risks choking off sales of the 2G model.
What to do?
The stock traders at The Mac Observer’s Apple Finance Board have started speculating about how Apple might handle this delicate transition. One of the moderators, a Devon-based investor who calls himself sleepygeek (and uses those quaint British spelling conventions), offers a few ideas:
- innovative confidentiality agreements with approval agencies.
- No change in appearance – so that those encountering the device in advance don’t realise it has new hardware.
- Covert hardware upgrades (like macbook 802.11n) so that iPhones sold in the weeks before announcement already have the important new hardware.
- Trade in programme – those on contract (and generating revenue share) can trade-in the old iPhone and start a new 2-year contract.
- price/model alternation (similar to macbook/macbook pro): new features are announced on a much more expensive model, which becomes the standard at the standard price at the next model change. (link)
How do you think Steve Jobs ought handle the 3G introduction?
The Software Development Kit (SDK) for the iPhone is scheduled to be released by Apple in February 2008, so expect the development community to have applications that are ready for the general populace available by May or June of 2008 at the latest.
Posted By W. Conner, Portland, OR : December 17, 2007 9:01 am
3G is a non-issue to begin with. To see any real improvement, the service has to be twice as fast. 3G is just a lot of BS from the haters that want to see Apple fail. This is nothing new. Many windoze nerds hate and fear Apple and want nothing more than to see them fail. They come up with all sorts of stupid reasons why the iPhone will fail, but iPhone has more market share in 6 months than their idiotic WIn CE setups have in 6 years.
What would really sell is an iPhone with a cheaper service plan.
Likewise all the FUD about ‘push’ email. Push email is not real email. The last thing Apple is going to do is fall in line behind Microsoft an enable Microsoft’s monopoly to continue with Outlook/Exchange. What iPhone is doing is forcing the Microsoft owned IT groups to open their servers to REAL email which is POP3, etc… OPEN STANDARDS, not Microsoft’s PROPRIETARY servers which have nothing to do with REAL email standards like POP3 and iMAP.
The Apple haters diss the iPhone for not supporting Microsoft Outbreak, when Microsoft can’t be bothered to support it on COMPUTERS not running WIndows. This is a huge purpose of the iPhone, to bust the Microsft grip on email. Email should be based on open standards, not owned by Microsoft.
3G is barely faster than 2.5 G, and incredibily SLOW compared to WIFI which the iPhone already has and no other phone supports.
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