Telstra exec tells Apple to ‘stick to its knitting’ as iPhone looms

“Greg Winn is considered Telstra’s second-in-charge and oversees most of the carrier’s big product decisions,” Sam Holmes reports for AAP. “He believes the iPhone may meet some significant operational challenges when it comes to actually making its market debut.”

“The iPhone is expected to hit US shelves in the middle of this year while an Australian release has been scheduled for some time next year. ‘There’s an old saying — stick to your knitting — and Apple is not a mobile phone manufacturer, that’s not their knitting,’ Winn told AAP. ‘You can pretty much be assured that Nokia, Motorola, Samsung, Sony Ericsson and ZTE and others will be coming out with devices that have similar functionality,'” Holmes reports.

Holmes reports, “In addition to mobile calling, music portability and e-mail capability, the iPhone boasts a vastly enhanced design that significantly challenges most mobiles’ current approaches to user interface. The phone’s touchscreen is also considered a significant drawcard but Winn doesn’t believe the device is truly revolutionary. ‘I think people overreacted to it — there was not a lot of tremendously new stuff if you think about it,’ he said.”

“Winn said from a marketing perspective, Apple had committed a number of oversights, including the iPhone name, which provoked a corporate slanging match with enterprise systems group Cisco, which had previously registered ‘iPhone’ as one of its own trademarks,” Holmes reports.

Holmes reports, “Apple’s exclusive carrier arrangement with US mobile carrier Cingular was also puzzling. ‘They did an exclusive with Cingular and they talked about a global rollout — well, Cingular is not a global company,’ he said. The non-replaceable battery may also be a sticking point with consumers, as it has been with the iPod.”

Full article here.
Apple is a mobile phone manufacturer; a revolutionary mobile phone manufacturer, to be precise. The others will not be “coming out with devices that have similar functionality,” since Apple has over 200 patents granted and pending on iPhone and intends to strongly protect them, according to CEO Steve Jobs.

The “iPhone” name dispute with Cisco is a non-story and meaningless. Anyone who brings it up is either looking to bolster their list of iPhone FUD or is an ignoramus.

Apple’s exclusive carrier arrangement with Cingular is for the US-only, hence the use of a US carrier. Steve Jobs said clearly that iPhone will go 3G in the future which means many carrier possibilities for Apple around the world. Non-US carriers need not fit current iPhone specs.

The battery design is not a sticking point and we can give you about 21 million reasons from last quarter alone, if need be.

And, finally, Steve Jobs has obviously already told Telstra to go pound sand and that’s exactly why you see this sniveling, whiny little baby’s comments in print today. There are now two very different kinds of mobile carriers: Apple iPhone haves and have-nots. The former group is planning where to store their new profits while the latter group is stuck trying to spread FUD in public (with laughable results, as you can see above) while pulling out their hair in private.

Winn, you lose.

Related articles:
Digit takes a closer look at Apple’s iPhone – February 14, 2007
Microsoft caught off-guard, beaten badly by Apple’s iPhone innovations – February 13, 2007
Palm CEO: ‘We don’t want to follow design fads’; Nokia CEO challenges Apple over iPhone – February 13, 2007
RIM co-CEO doesn’t see threat from Apple’s iPhone – February 12, 2007
Apple’s soon-to-be iPhone rivals sound just like iPod rivals circa 2001 – February 01, 2007
O2, Vodafone, Orange, T-Mobile battle for exclusive rights to Apple iPhone in UK – January 26, 2007
Rogers to offer Apple iPhone exclusively in Canada – January 25, 2007
FUD Alert: Apple iPhone ‘isn’t very practical’ and a ‘security risk’ for business – January 24, 2007
Research in Motion downgraded due to Apple iPhone competition – January 23, 2007
Microsoft CEO Ballmer laughs at Apple iPhone – January 17, 2007
RealMoney: Apple just blew up the whole damn mobile-phone supply chain with its new iPhone – January 11, 2007
The massive FUD campaign against Apple’s iPhone ramps up – January 10, 2007
eWeek: Apple iPhone fallout: ‘They must be crying in Nokia-ville and other telephony towns today’ – January 10, 2007
Jefferies downgrades Motorola on fears of market share loss to Apple iPhone – January 10, 2007
The massive FUD campaign against Apple’s iPhone ramps up – January 10, 2007
Time: ‘iPhone could crush cell phone market pitilessly beneath the weight of its own superiority’ – January 09, 2007
Analyst: Apple iPhone should be given its own category – ‘brilliantphone’ – January 09, 2007
Apple debuts iPhone: touchscreen mobile phone + widescreen iPod + Internet communicator – January 09, 2007


  1. It would be nice if Steve had been more specific about just what about the iPhone was patented and therefore protected. It seems as if none of the important features (multi-touch screen, etc.) are things that have been patented since they already exist in other products.

  2. I love all the minimizing the critics are doing. It will only serve Apple. I hope they take such a lax attitude toward Apple behind closed doors– that’s when Apple can easily swoop in and make some dough.

  3. What a bunch of pathedic shits. They were all caught with their pants down by the genius of Jobs and company. Envy and Fear, the two emotions that rout their little heads 24-7. F’ um all. F’ um all…

  4. “There’s an old saying — stick to your knitting — and Apple is not a mobile phone manufacturer, that’s not their knitting”

    Apple weren’t portable music player manufacturers either, before they created the iPod – the most popular music device IN ALL OF TIME!

    “I think people overreacted to it — there was not a lot of tremendously new stuff if you think about it”

    Having a HDD drive with a headphone port wasn’t tremendously new either, but just look what happened!

    FUD, FUD, FUD.

  5. These telecom guys truly do not get it. Their little monopoly worlds are caving in on them and they haven’t a clue. Sure, the tech may not be new, but only Apple could and has put it all together in a nice tight package that consumers will find pleasing to use.

    Anyone tried the Motorola interface? Blech.

  6. I think the key to the phone among things is what Steve Jobs said at a meeting I was at. Apple is very good at making software and not many companies are. The cell phone makers are not great at software and this gives Apple a leg up on the phone manufacturers. Palm and MS are the other two large software creators and the Palm OS is slipping and we know where MS is….

  7. Mac OS X is a mature OS and it’s being used in the iPhone. Anyone who tries to play catch-up has to develop something that can compete with a 6-year-old cutting edge OS with a solid foundation and lots of room to grow.

    Good luck.

  8. He doesnt get it does he… Its not about the phone functions. Well, apart from ensuring that they work quickly and easily. The iPhone will be all about its software – and in particular the way in which the network component integrates with everything else. It will be a PDA which works intuitively and easily. It will be a phone which is easy to use and doesnt require you to put your reading glasses on and prod at the screen with a plastic stylus. It will be a music player with a “better than iPod” interface.

    For those that don’t know, Telstra is what the telephony arm of the PMG turned into. PMG = Post Master General. It used to be a government-owned enterprise and is reknowned for inefficiency, appalling customer service and an over reliance on fixed line phones and the ovecharging of competitors for its infrastructure (Telstra owns just about all the copper wire in Australia and charges connection fees to other phone companies).

    If Telstra are unenthusiastic about iPhone I rather suspect it is because Apple are looking for a single partner in Australia who will work closely with them to deliver a new level of functionality and service. One meeting with Telstra is probably enough for any Apple executive to determine that this is very much a 19th century organisation still coming to terms with the advent of push button phones… The cultural differences between Telstra and Apple would make this a very difficult relationship…

    So, from this I deduce that Apple will roll out a single-telecom solution around the world, choosing a single partners in each location who will do it Apple’s way…

  9. I highly doubt Multi-touch itself is patented by Apple, just whatever way they’ve gone about implementing it. There are already a few devices at 3GSM that use Multi-touch.

    Frankly, if Apple did have Multi-touch itself patented, I’d be disheartened with them if they tried stifling the technology for the rest of the industry. This is not something that should be Apple-only.

  10. R2,

    You’ve confused multi-touch with touchscreen. The devices shown at 3GSM are run-of-the-mill touchscreen. They can only pretend to be like iPhones when they are not – the reviews will prove it and educate the buying public as will the early adopters – jut like iPod.

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