Behind the iPhone and Apple/Cingular Deal

Discussion in ' News Discussion' started by MacRumors, Feb 16, 2007.

  1. MacRumors macrumors bot


    Apr 12, 2001

    The Wall Street Journal delves deeper (Subscription Required) into the history of the development of the Apple iPhone and touches on a number of details that had already emerged in the weeks following the iPhone announcement.

    The article reinforces the impression that Apple been able to negotiate a remarkably favorable deal in a traditionally Cell Phone Carrier-slanted market. The Wall Street Journal confirms details such as a lack of Cingular branding, limited retail availability (Cingular Stores and Apple Stores only), and even Cingular sharing monthly revenue with Apple.

    Many of these terms and conditions were previously revealed when news came out that Verizon had passed on the iPhone. The original article's claims that Apple wanted "a percentage of the monthly cellphone fees, say over how and where iPhones could be sold and control of the relationship with iPhone customers" appears to be true.

    Apple's level of secrecy surrounding this project appears to have reached all time highs as previously noted. Earlier reports claimed that several fake prototypes were circulated to confound rumors of the device. This new article confirms that very few individuals had seen the full iPhone prior to launch. Even Cingular engineers were given dummy versions with very limited access. Even now, "the handful of Cingular people who have access to the sample phones at the company's headquarters were required to sign confidentiality agreements."
  2. DMann macrumors 601


    Jan 13, 2002
    Seeya verizon

    This will be big, no doubt. Verizon's loss, Cingular's gain....
  3. ipedro macrumors 601


    Nov 30, 2004
    Toronto, ON
    I still think Apple would have been better off being their own service provider.

    This is perhaps what they'll do once they've entered the market and the Cingular deal expires.
  4. jhedges3 macrumors regular

    Sep 11, 2003
    NY, NY
    Is that even feasible?

    I thought Cingular has exclusive rights for a few years.
  5. arn macrumors god


    Staff Member

    Apr 9, 2001
    The article mentions this and Jobs didn't want to do it

  6. zombitronic macrumors 65816


    Feb 9, 2007
    Agreed. I wonder if Verizon had regrets about passing after the phone was revealed. But then again, Cingular might be the one with regrets if the phone isn't as much of a money maker to them as they're hoping.

    Personally, I can't wait to ditch T-Mobile for a service that actually works within my house. They've got my $600...however they split it. And it would feel good to me knowing that Apple would be putting some of my monthly bill back into their pockets. That just tells me that it's more about the phone than the service.

    Anyone know if Cingular lets you bring over your number from another carrier?
  7. Barabas macrumors member

    Jul 20, 2006
    I played around with the iPhone last night, finally able to borrow a friends. The touch screen worked really well and I was suprized how elegant it was to hold. The colors looked great.

    Then I woke up. :mad:
  8. bigandy macrumors G3


    Apr 30, 2004
    With monthly revenue sharing, no network branding and the suchlike, I think Cingular just realised how important it could be to have Apple on your side in the marketplace.

    I'm glad about the lack of branding, I can't stand network logos on phones. Yuk. :eek:
  9. GFLPraxis macrumors 604


    Mar 17, 2004
    What makes you think Cingular will be significantly better? T-Mobile and Cingular are both GSM...

    Over here, T-Mobile tends to be regarded as the better of the two, but I haven't seen any kind of tests.
  10. darwen macrumors 6502a


    Apr 12, 2005
    California, US
    This is starting to sound borderline paranoid. I knew this from previous reports but how it is phrased here just sounds ridiculous.

    I have never heard of another corporation as locked down as Apple. Can someone please explain why it is necessary for Apple to have confidentiality agreements on a product Steve Jobs spent 1.5 hours talking about??? How much could there be that he hasn't told us? On top of that, what is it that he could still be hiding?

    This just all seems over the top. I thought it was cool until the iPhone, Apple is just getting crazy now. Maybe if they spent less time making fake iPhones we wouldn't need to wait till June to buy them. Am I alone on this complaint?
  11. Chupa Chupa macrumors G5

    Chupa Chupa

    Jul 16, 2002

    Because no other company is copied as much as Apple. It's the old saying...just because you are paranoid doesn't mean they aren't out to get you. One leak could take away Apple's competitive edge. Go worry about something else and Apple will worry about getting its products to market just fine.
  12. Chaszmyr macrumors 601


    Aug 9, 2002
    This is sad but true. Apple really is the most copied company out there.

    However, I doubt that's the only reason for the secrecy, at least before launches. Steve just likes to unveil surprises.
  13. Stella macrumors G3


    Apr 21, 2003
    "The deal also calls for Cingular to share with Apple a portion of the monthly revenues from subscribers, a person familiar with the matter says."

    Pure greed.

    I find it difficult to see why Apple would want revenues from cell network subscribers who have iPhone. Once Apple have made the sale of the iPhone, thats it. Period. Just like any other phone. No wonder Verizon passed on the deal - too many demands from Apple.

    Surely this is like the RIAA wanting a cut of $ from sales of iPod.

    As nice as the GUI on the iPhone is, I really don't think its worth the demands. Is the iPhone always going to be exclusive - what happens out-of-exclusivity - are Apple going to want a share of any cell network revenues per iPhone subscriber?

    The an Apple own cell network would never work: it would be u.s only and higher priced than any other service ( .Mac for example?). Jobs comments are well founded on the matter.
  14. macridah macrumors 6502a


    Feb 18, 2004
  15. crees! macrumors 68000


    Jun 14, 2003
    Apple takes a few cents from each purchase of iTMS so what's the difference?

    In the US, yes. There is a law in place to allow this.

    Sadly, I believe you're the only one. And you haven't seen nothing yet regarding the iPhone
  16. JHankwitz macrumors 68000

    Oct 31, 2005
    Having a cut from subscriptions would help off-set the costs of support at Apple's stores.
  17. Stella macrumors G3


    Apr 21, 2003
    The different is:
    iTMS is a store, so like any store, Apple charges the provider of the goods a small amount of money.

    In this case, Apple is the provider and, strangely, Apple want money from Cingular per iPhone subscriber.

    The cost of support should be priced into the phone, just like any other Apple / non-Apple product. Remember, its Apple who demands to support the customer, not the cell provider ( this is correct? ).

    If I have a problem with my Nokia phone, I don't go to Fido, I'll contact Nokia.

    EDIT: Oh God its so early on Saturday and my grammar has gone to hell. Too many mistakes to fix!
  18. Punkwaffle macrumors regular


    Apr 12, 2004
    FYI everyone, the exclusivity of Cingular having the iPhone is multi-year. Exactly how many years you ask- 5 YEAR EXCLUSIVE!:eek:
    i spoke with our data team specialist (i work at Cingular) and this is legit.
  19. ltcol266845 macrumors regular

    Aug 25, 2006
    Elgin, IL
    T-Mobile FTW!

    T-Mobile has BY FAR the best smartphone plan. (granted, 3G is not quite off the ground yet) $60 a month gets one unlimited internet, unlimited text messages, 1000 minutes a month with unlimited nights and weekends!! haven't seen ANYONE with a plan to match!

    This deal with AT&T sounds really strange... Be interesting to see how it progresses

    EDIT:: Here is a link. I know it says it is for BlackBerrys, but it is compatible with their other smartphones too.
  20. Digital Skunk macrumors 604

    Digital Skunk

    Dec 23, 2006
    In my imagination
    Sounds like one of those inside source rumors you get on these sites now a days...:D

    Seriously though that is true from what everyone else is saying. My new Sprint iPhone will be sweet :cool: :cool: when I get it. It will have been five years improved over the current one. Can't wait for that.

    2012 here I come.
  21. clevin macrumors G3


    Aug 6, 2006
    ugly business deals, looking at both side, u can only see one thing which is greedy. lol
  22. Digital Skunk macrumors 604

    Digital Skunk

    Dec 23, 2006
    In my imagination
    This is exactly why I cried a bit when Jobs said it was with Cingular only and not at least with the big three (Cingular, Sprint, Verizon) and that you couldn't get the phone unlocked and just use it as a $600 widescreen iPod/PDA. I am not made of money and I am not switching service providers to get an iPhone... thought about it... but don't have the cash:(

    So I am just going to pick up Treo 700p with that ugly UI to replace my two year old LG. Grab a cheap 2GB SD card and Pocket Tunes to play my AAC files and I am good to go.
  23. clevin macrumors G3


    Aug 6, 2006
    so ur hate for cingular+palm surpassed ur love for iPhone? sorry, its just a calculation apple need to think when they made the deal, and trust me, apple got as much as they can from this deal.

    Think about it, If you can't buy iPhone for whatever reason, Im sure then you actually belong to the part of users apple already planed to give up.:D
  24. Lepton macrumors 6502a


    Apr 13, 2002
    Cold Spring Harbor, NY
    That's what I was convinced they would do. It is the only way to have complete control over the data plans and services they could provide, and I'm sure they want to allow downloading of songs from iTunes, good syncing, all you can eat high speed data, and so on.

    But I guess I can understand. Billing, logistics, it's quite a burden, and doing it worldwide would be a nightmare, so I guess they decided to go with getting the best deals they could with individual companies in various world markets. And Apple does have leverage, because people with brains know Apple will do phones up right and be successful as heck at it. People with brains are few and far between at the phone companies though, but I guess they found a few.
  25. reallynotnick macrumors 6502a

    Oct 21, 2005
    The reason it is fesable is because they are going exclusive with Cingular. If they really just wanted to sell phones it would be unlocked. So personally I think it is all fair if Cingular wants the best phone ever to be exclusive to them.

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