[governance] the Apple iPhone rort

McTim dogwallah at gmail.com
Wed Jul 11 00:35:50 EDT 2007

On 7/11/07, David Goldstein <goldstein_david at yahoo.com.au> wrote:
> Hi all,
> I'd put this posting below on my website - http://technewsreview.com.au/ -
> and thought I'd post it here and see what the response was. It's based on an
> article in The Guardian today that makes a few more points on the new
> must-have iPhone. Well, must have only for those who are slaves to marketing
> hype. It makes points that have been made before.
> To have an iPhone one must agree to a contract with AT&T,

Now that the iPhone has been cracked/hacked/unlocked you can take it to
another provider.  I guess you still have to buy an AT&T contract, but you
could probably get a pay as you go one, and spend virtually nothing.

previously described as one of the worst mobile phone service providers in
> the US. So if you want an iPhone, and you are already contracted to another
> company, you have to terminate that contract with the related fees that
> involves. Ben Scott's article also notes "if you are on a family plan, you
> may have to pay a separate fee to terminate all of your family's phones."
> And there's the point that that AT&T doesn't offer full coverage in more
> than a dozen states.
> Now, the real point the article makes I'd not thought of, and relevant to
> this list, is that the "practice of tying users to one provider is unique to
> the wireless world. Cable TV providers can't tell you what kind of TV to
> buy.

No, but you are "locked" to the CPE they give you (or sell you).  A wireless
CPE where I live now costs ~1000 USD.  Most companies here will think long
and hard before they switch providers because of the investment they have
already made.

Provider lock-in is nothing new, and not limited to this phone.

And regular phone service will work on any phone you can find at your
> favorite electronics store. In the latter case, that's because there is a
> longstanding set of laws that guarantee consumer choice."
> In the USA, at least, this is "called the 'Carterfone' rules, these laws
> make it so you can use any device you want - phone, headset, fax machine or
> dial-up modem - on your telephone network, so long as it doesn't harm the
> network."
> The article then says, "But it gets worse: phone companies don't just hold
> the iPhone captive; they also routinely cripple features on handsets (like
> Wi-Fi, games, audio and video) so that you can only access their 'preferred'
> content. They also limit access to the network, despite marketing 'unlimited
> access'. And they reserve the right to boot you off the network if you do
> almost anything they don't like."
> "This kind of 'blocking and locking' behavior doesn't stop you from
> accessing the internet, but it does shape your experience and undermine the
> open, level playing field that consumers have come to expect online. The
> iPhone is simply the highest-profile example of a wireless internet market
> that is drifting further and further away from the free and open internet
> we've all come to expect.
> "The only solution to this problem is a political one.

or technical, there is a beta OS version of this phone in stores now.


$ whois -h whois.afrinic.net mctim
-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: <http://lists.igcaucus.org/pipermail/governance/attachments/20070711/6aef6714/attachment.htm>
-------------- next part --------------
An embedded and charset-unspecified text was scrubbed...
Name: message-footer.txt
URL: <http://lists.igcaucus.org/pipermail/governance/attachments/20070711/6aef6714/attachment.txt>

More information about the Governance mailing list