In iPhone

About 3 months ago, I made a firm decision that I’m definitely buying an iPhone. Been wanting one ever since its launch an year ago and the latest iPhone 3G at $199 made it mouth wateringly reachable. Apple had a 100% assured buyer in me. So, why did Apple lose me? Here’s why.

Reason #1: Promises not kept. I distinctly remember Steve Jobs, during his keynote speech during iPhone 3G’s launch, mention that it would $199 and equivalent across all markets. When it comes from Steve Jobs, you believe him. It just rubbed me the wrong way that that promise wasn’t kept. It left a bad taste in my mouth.

Reason #2: Feeling of getting ripped off. How does it feel paying way beyond the MRP of a product? Feels shit ofcouse. What else explains, paying $750 for a $499 phone?

Reason #3: The Price will eventually drop. It’s a classic Apple strategy. Launch it at a higher cost. Milk the fellas who have the money and can’t wait. Catch the gadget freaks. Satisfy their ‘I-got-it-first’ egos. Once this layer is covered, cut the price down and target the next layer. Look at the historical data of iPods and the iPhone in the US and its easy to map it in India.

Reason #4: I’d like to retain my old number. I’m on Aircel and I’ve had my phone number 98415 97744 for over 5 years now. No way am I going to let go of this number. Has too much professional and personal connections at stake. If I get an iPhone, then it means I’ll have to carry two phones with me. The iPhone will at best be a portable interent device and music player.

Reason #5: I’m quite happy with my Nokia N82. It’s WiFi is good. Great camera. Nice phone overall. It’s a little difficult to justify to myself why I should cough up an extra Rs.31,000 when I’m quite happy with what I have right now.

If you notice, none of my 5 reasons has anything to do with the iPhone gadget. I love the phone and its features. And that’s exactly why its such a shame that Apple lost me. It’s such a shame that they couldn’t convert such great brand goodwill and months of pentup anticipation into solid sales.

I read today’s report that there were over 90,00,000 (90 lakh) new phone connections last month alone and its such a shame that only a few thousand iPhones have been sold so far.

For guys like Vodafone and Airtel, it really won’t make much of a difference to their bottomline. They’ll still get tons of subscribers anyways. However, its an opportunity lost to establish their coolness. It’s Apple’s loss entire.

India is a land of EMIs. India is a land of volume. Apple clearly hasn’t learnt that yet.