Apple counters cheap Android phones in India by relaunching unlocked iPhone 3GS

“Apple has divulged plans to relaunch its iPhone 3GS, which was then only available through network operators like Vodafone and Airtel,” Ruchika Mehta reports for IT PRO India. “The new unlocked version will come with 8GB internal storage at a very reasonable price of Rs. 19,990 [US$444].

“Apple’s latest iOS version 4.3 supports iPhone 3GS, making it a worthy opponent to similarly-priced Android devices with better hardware,” Mehta reports. “Apple has also said that iOS 5 will work on iPhone 3GS though it is likely that not all features will be supported.”

Mehta reports, “For now, Airtel and Aircel will reportedly offer the iPhone 3GS while others will join the league after sometime. Moreover, users now have the flexibility to change operators as per choice.”

Read more in the full article here.

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


    1. For what purpose. Until things get a little more regulated (this coming from a staunch free-marketer), unlocked phones are useless save for the contract lock-in. You pay the same monthly price as the person who got a subsidized phone, so you’re essentially just giving money to the carriers who don’t need to recoup the cost of the phone subsidy. Add to that that only on AT&T will all your features work (no 3G on T-Mobile), and it makes it nearly useless to have an unlocked phone in the US.

      Once AT&T and Verizon are both predominantly LTE, it’ll be a different story, but since AT&T is dragging their feet on that one, I’d say we have at least 5 years before that comes to fruition.

      1. I agree, I despise the built-in hardware subsidy. You end up paying more than paying upfront for the hardware, and the you continuing paying even after two years. It is like Rent-a-Center on steroids. The phone subsidy ought to be listed as a separate charge that is eliminated after your contract expires.

    2. You can wait until the new iPhone is released. Then, current iPhone 3gs owners with two-year contracts expiring (or already expired) will upgrade. The iPhone 3gs became two years old just a few weeks ago. Their used iPhone 3gs’s will be sold on eBay en masse, and you should be able to pick one up for less than $200 (or maybe under $150), not the $449 no-contract price. And it will be the 16GB model; the low-end iPhone model two years ago was “last year’s” 8GB iPhone 3g (no “s”), so iPhone 3gs was 16GB (or 32GB).

      That’s my plan. I current have an original iPhone that I bought used for $115 on eBay. I use it like an iPod touch that can make phone calls, with AT&T’s pre-paid GoPhone service.

    1. I sold mine to amazon, the tech buy link that MDN reported on a few months ago.

      If you don’t need the old iPhone, sell it there. Was easy, no random person to deal with.

  1. Bad move by Apple , unlike China , the difference for smart phones is coverage.
    If Americans complain about AT&T , then it will be more songor Indians.
    I know loads of Indians who switch back to normal phones or leave their smart phones in their second countries .
    Sales won’t go thru the roof despite this. But reseller might make money.

  2. “The new unlocked version will come with 8GB internal storage at a very reasonable price of Rs. 19,990 [US$444].”
    What’s this guy smoking? Cheap for the US, maybe, but NOT something millions of Indians can afford.I’m certain there are half decent Androids available for a 1/4 of this price. No wonder Android is getting 500k activations a day. Apple is being sidelined and WinPho will accelerate this.

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