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iPhone 3G Finally Available In US Contract-Free 265

Engadget is reporting that the iPhone 3G is finally available contract-free if you are willing to pay a much higher premium. Without a contract consumers are looking at $599 for an 8GB model and $699 for the 16GB. AT&T has the added restriction that you must be an existing AT&T customer, but Apple (retail stores only, sorry) will sell one to anyone willing to pay the premium. This change brings the model much closer to the prevailing European model where phones are sold as hardware and the plans are handled completely separately.
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iPhone 3G Finally Available In US Contract-Free

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  • by viridari ( 1138635 ) on Friday March 27, 2009 @12:56PM (#27359483)
    And it will then "just work" with T-Mobile?
  • Okay... (Score:3, Interesting)

    by CSHARP123 ( 904951 ) on Friday March 27, 2009 @12:56PM (#27359497)
    Does it work with other carriers? They may sell it but they never said it will work with other carriers.
  • Re:European Model... (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Extensa30 ( 1150211 ) on Friday March 27, 2009 @01:03PM (#27359599)
    well, that is not true AT ALL. I've been living in 4 different countries so far, with mobile phones bought in the 4 of them (spain, france, england and germany so far). Pretty much each country does different: in some of them the higher the forfait you agree to pay monthly, the cheaper the phone is, in others there is not such an agreement (well, allways a 5 euros or so), but I've NEVER seen paying money just for the line (and with that I mean money that does not come, or can not be spent in calls) The parent is shimply lying.
  • by ByrneArena ( 848313 ) on Friday March 27, 2009 @01:15PM (#27359819)
    My daughter has that samsung. That phone isn't in the same ballpark as the iPhone... in fact I am not sure it is in the same sport.
  • by iluvcapra ( 782887 ) on Friday March 27, 2009 @01:22PM (#27359953)

    Since you did win it in a contest, you know that you could abandon it now at no cost to you and just use what you'd prefer, a Nokia, Blackberry, whatever. But it would appear that you get enough use out of this "hamstrung, nerfed piece of junk," (and Apple's been providing pretty decent support to you on it) that you haven't gotten rid of it.

    No snark, but how bad could the thing possibly be if you haven't replaced it? I have known some pieces of junk in my time... I do not think this term means what you think it means.

  • Re:Here in Canada (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Kabuthunk ( 972557 ) <<moc.liamtoh> <ta> <knuhtubak>> on Friday March 27, 2009 @01:42PM (#27360329) Homepage

    Pay as you go, my friend... pay as you go.

    I as well have a cellphone (albeit not an iphone... I hate them, personally) and am on the Rogers network. However, I just bought my phone outright from Wireless Wave (I'm sure anywhere that sells cellphones, you can get it non-contract), popped in my SIM card from my old POS nonworking phone, and off I went. I don't use it much, so I'm putting $15 a month on it tops. Helluva lot cheaper than any plan. Downside is I don't have voicemail and maybe some of the other extras, but I can text, send, and receive calls, so it's plenty good enough for my phone usage.

    Screw plans if you don't use your phone a great amount.

  • Re:So it's true (Score:1, Interesting)

    by galay ( 766813 ) on Friday March 27, 2009 @01:48PM (#27360443)
    Believe it or not, a lot of people have a big phobia with contracts. Since the first day of iPhone 3G launch, I have explained to countless people that an iPhone can be bought without a contract. They will be all excited and ask me how this can be done. As soon as I explain to them that "easy, just activate a new line and terminate the contract. It'll cost you..." their face instantly frowns as soon as they hear the word terminate without me even getting to the total net cost.
  • by SydShamino ( 547793 ) on Friday March 27, 2009 @01:55PM (#27360551)

    It's all relative. My phone was $6.50 refurbished from Virgin. I pay $90 pre-paid each November for a year of service. That's $186.50 for 2 years of service at about 75 minutes a month.

    As much as as I like gadgets, I just can't imagine paying $15/MO for a phone. I'd much rather put that money towards blackjack and hookers. In fact, forget the blackjack. Ah, screw the whole thing.

  • Re:European Model... (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Apaine ( 1517315 ) on Friday March 27, 2009 @02:40PM (#27361311)
    I second that. Coming from Continental Europe, visiting Britain - it is more akin to visiting US or Australia than Spain or Poland. Things are done differently, and engineering practices are compatible with continental Europe only when they absolutely have to be. Personal experience about engineering practices - In continental Europe - workmanship/quality comes first - cost/time to manufacture comes second. It is usually the opposite in Britain.
  • by dadragon ( 177695 ) on Friday March 27, 2009 @02:46PM (#27361401) Homepage

    Give it a little time. SaskTel, Telus, MTS, Bell, Shaw, Yak, and I think a few others are all building GSM networks. Rogers didn't get offered iPhone exclusivity in Canada, so soon there will be several carriers with iPhone plans.

    Yay competition.

  • Re:European Model... (Score:2, Interesting)

    by rmav ( 1149097 ) on Friday March 27, 2009 @05:43PM (#27363973)
    No, you do not need to resync.

    In fact, the iPhone is the only handset I know where you can hot-swap the SIM cards - I never switch it off, I just pop one off and put the new one in. VERY handy. No resyncing. Just works. Very smooth - and Apple implemented it in an amazing way. That's why simlocked or netlocked iPhones are a technological crime!!!


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