AT&T: iPhone will NOT come with 18-months of free service

“This morning, a reputable investment site made mention that AT&T plans to give away 18 months of service for free with every iPhone,” Briam Lam reports for Gizmodo.

Lam reports, “It’s not important who said this cough *thestreet.com* cough, but a Cingular rep just told me that the rumors are simply not true: The report is nonsense. ‘We’ve always said the only way you can get the iPhone is with a Cingular rate plan.’

Full article here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Scott” for the heads up.]

MacDailyNews Note: AT&T (Cingular) has not yet announced iPhone rate plans.

Related article:
Jim Cramer: AT&T to promote Apple iPhone with 18 months of free service – January 25, 2007

17 Comments

  1. i suspect misinformation here.

    I think that the FREE refers to the DATA add-on to a regular cell phone minutes plan.

    Think a regular cell plan + a data plan($20). And the data plan would be free for 18 months.

    NOTICE how the Cingular rep. says, “‘We’ve always said the only way you can get the iPhone is with a Cingular RATE plan.” He says nothing of a data plan.

  2. I find that denial pretty vague. Plus, there are employees of Cingular and Rodgers saying that Apple is not allowing subsidies. That makes 499 and 599 unsubsidized, creating room for discounts.

  3. With all the giddy, irrational nonesense running amuk over the introduction of a new cell phone, why in the world would any business enterprise offer any kind of incentive, discount, or special offer to attract buyers.

    Even Steve’s Chinese assembly lines won’t be able to keep up with the buying frenzy.

    Then, when everyone sobers up, and there is a true consumer test of how well the phone works, there may be some incentives.

    AT&T, Cingular – whatever – is as cocky as Lord Jobs and, if anything, they are going to see just how far they can push the market before they hit the limit of what all this hysteria will support. Look for price INREASES, longer commitment terms, higher RATES, between now and June.

  4. “Cramer said AT&T (NYSE: T – News) is one of the most interesting stories coming out of the tech period. In its call, the company made it very clear that it’s going to use Apple’s (Nasdaq: AAPL – News) iPhone to get customers from Verizon Wireless (NYSE: VZ – News) by giving away its service for a year and a half to those customers who buy the phone,” a recap of Cramer’s Wednesday, January 24th appearance on TheStreet.com TV, posted on TheStreet.com, read.

    Ostensibly, Cramer, or the person recapping what Cramer said, was referring to Cingular’s conference call from Wednesday morning. The problem is, no one on Cingular’s call ever mentioned giving away free service to iPhone buyers.

    According to a transcript provided by CallStreet, outside of a couple of brief mentions in the prepared remarks, the subject of the iPhone only came up once on Cingular’s call. Furthermore, on yesterday’s AT&T’s conference call, the iPhone was mentioned just once, and in passing.

    http://biz.yahoo.com/indie/070126/587_id.html?.v=1

  5. Nevertheless, at MacWorld Expo, the official announcement quoted prices including a two-year contract.” Now, this information may not be correct, but I totally agree with the person who wrote in to point out that a Cingular rep would be the last person in the world to have a definitive answer to that question. They can’t even give intelligent answers to questions about the products they are already shipping.

  6. *ONLY* available with a Cingular rate plan? I thought these were going to be available from the Apple store? What if I want to buy the sucker and use the PDA functionality via Wi-Fi and bluetooth connectivity options until my existing phone plan goes away? Or what if I don’t want to use it as a phone at all?

    I hope that’s a misstatement.

  7. If AT&T isn’t allowed to subsidize the iPhone, what is AT&T giving Apple for the exclusive contract? What’s in it for Apple? Normally the cell service providers get phone exclusivity (like Verizon with the Q) in exchange for phone subsidy (why the Q only costs $99). If there’s no subsidy, then AT&T must be giving Apple something else.

    It may be freedom from the damn branding they normally stamp all over the phone. I doubt that Jobs would want AT&T logos plastered all over the iPhone. Could that be it?

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