Technology. Dissected, discredited.


Telecom iPhone bait - is it worth it?

, posted: 15-Jul-2009 11:34

Yesterdays announcement from Telecom offering a very nice sounding reason to owners of iPhone 3G/3GS's (or is that 3jesuses)  sure does sound good but is it as great of an offering as they say? At $1149 for an unsubsidized iPhone, I can't imagine there being more than a few hundred people this whole thing is applicable to. I am part of those handful of people.

I have been a customer of Vodafone as long as I've had a cell phone. Suffice to say for most of that I've felt shafted but know as well as anyone that switching got you fundamentally the same plan at the same price with a different number.

I currently spend $90+ on my Talk 120 plan - far from good value but not really worth me jumping on a specific iPhone plan. Below I've tried to make a comparison of the similar plans on Vodafone and Telecom. This isn't too scientific and feel free to point out any errors.


New Telecom Plans Compared to Vodafone


So there you have it - tie yourself to Telecom and get 25% off your plan over the course of the 2 year contract. Of course will the pricing on plans change much over the next 24 months? I would hope so but we all know how it works in NZ.

One thing we should all demanding - carry over minutes. They market these plans as having 'free/included minutes' but in reality when you pay $60 for 120mins (as I do now) you're really paying $0.50c a minute for calls with a gaurantee of paying for at least 120 of them - which makes one wonder - if one pays for these minutes at that rate you should be allowed you to carry over the minutes for the next month - but not in NZ, if you don't use your minutes they disappear into the either and you still pay for them.

Will I switch? It depends. The question will Vodafone try and keep me?

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Comment by Paul Brislen, on 15-Jul-2009 11:48

Good to see this out in the public space.

A couple of points:
First, you have Vodafone listed with no credit versus Telecom's $600 credit. If you buy the iPhone from Vodafone on the iPhone 80 plan the phone is discounted by around $580 off the RRP.

Also, currently we're offering 3GB of data and 1,000 PXTs free to all iPhone users on an iPhone plan who have installed 3.0 software.

The reason for this is that 3.0 now allows tethering and we felt 250MB of data wasn't enough in that situation so we've introduced 3GB/month instead. PXT is included for the same reason.

Yes, it's a three month special offer but at the end of that period there will be something else in the market to replace it.

Cheers
Paul Brislen
Vodafone External Communications Manager


Comment by DasKid, on 15-Jul-2009 12:16

"First, you have Vodafone listed with no credit versus Telecom's $600 credit. If you buy the iPhone from Vodafone on the iPhone 80 plan the phone is discounted by around $580 off the RRP."

+1

"Also, currently we're offering 3GB of data and 1,000 PXTs free to all iPhone users on an iPhone plan who have installed 3.0 software.

Yes, it's a three month special offer but at the end of that period there will be something else in the market to replace it."

That's nice Paul, but it's been said elsewhere, that's 21months of contract time on "something else".  I don't expect Vodafone to gift me anything, it's a company looking to make a profit, so I fully expect "something else" to be a disappointment.  I'd suggest Vodafone fill in the gaping 21month blank space sooner rather than later, because all you're achieving right now is making us very aware of the big countdown on that current bonus.


Comment by manhinli, on 15-Jul-2009 13:50

You might also want to check out my own spreadsheet:

http://tr.im/sdxs

Might show differences when you add more stuff in like usage as everyone uses their mobile differently.


Author's note by lotech, on 15-Jul-2009 16:49

Thanks Paul,
I do understand that if I did not have an iPhone your plan is almost identical to the Telecom offer (which in itself shows how little difference in pricing your plans really offer between companies).
As it is I do have an iphone already and as a result you offer no incentive to really sign on for longer.

Infact if anything of my 9 years of my custom Vodafone haven't as much as called to say thanks for being so dedicated. It's always - 'Hey Mr Regular - heres a great deal on a $1000 phone for only $799 and a 24 month plan'.

Tomorrow when I make a walk down Queen St what sort of offer will be the best between the firms, I imagine your staff will say the same old line - the iphone plans are already great value. And then I'll go to Telecom and get $600 discount - unless Vodafone want's to go out of its way and work out an offer?


Comment by exportgoldman, on 16-Jul-2009 00:14

lotech makes a good point, if you already have a iPhone, you get no resign bonues from Vodafone from reading this, but XT gives you $600 account credit.

But the real question on everyones lips is when can get the Vodafone Autralian plans here !


Comment by Ash, on 23-Jul-2009 10:47

Paul Brislen (Vodafone External Communications Manager), "...at the end of that period (3 months), there will be something else in the market to replace it."

Define something else? Since it can't be defined, it is called uncertainty and that's bad. To provide some guarantee of 3 months over 24 months contracts mean there are 21 months of uncertainty.
It's a failure.

Vodafone wants customers to get used to large data plan, then charge them when they can't live without? Very cunning!
Will that something else be available only to new customers or all existing customers? Not certain, isn't it? No guarantee is bad.

Will it also be available to customers on non-iPhone plans?
Some customers are using iPhone with non-iPhone plans while some with non-iPhone customers could actually sign up iPhone plan.

Why treat iPhone differently and bias your other handset suppliers?


Comment by Dan Allen, on 6-Aug-2009 15:25

I have been a Vodafone user for many years but recent outages and poor quality service in the Hamilton area has cost my company significant loses in revenue. The best Vodafone could offer us in recompense was 60 free minutes.

I signed up recently for an iPhone on the 24 month 250 plan.

After seeing the $600 offer from Telecom I asked Vodafone how much to break my contract and was told $760.

I am still considering this change as the Telecom network just seems so much more reliable and has better coverage.

The $760 to cancel my plan is the only thing that gives me pause.

Dan Allen


Author's note by lotech, on 25-Aug-2009 09:46

Following this up - Telecom list their early contract break fees here -
http://www.telecom.co.nz/binarys/xt_disconnection_fees.pdf

Interestingly if you want to change anypoint before the 24months is up expect a minimum of $185 fee - ouch.


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simon 
Auckland
New Zealand


I run a post production company specialising mainly in TV & Commercials. I also do graphic and motion design when it's there to be done. I've used Windows my whole life, but am now run Macs exclusively in our office and at home. Few issues. It just works.

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