So some 36 hours ago the new iPhone 4 got announced by Apple’s Steve Jobs and became the first truly worthwhile thing Apple have announced this year that isn’t just four existing products stuck together with cellotape! Plus the good news that the UK would be receiving the device at launch.
Since the announcement, what have the UK mobile networks done and what information have they released to their (potential) customers? Well the answer to that is not much. Each network have come out and said they will be selling it (in the order O2, Vodafone, Orange and new to the iPhone T-Mobile). O2 have also come out and said existing customers would be able to upgrade onto it but provided no solid details on if that is all existing customers, selected existing customers, a few customers drawn out of a hat or what.
Go onto most of the mobile phone network websites and you’ll find naff all actual information apart from harvesting e-mail addresses with the promise of being the first to find out. But the information we need such as cost and details of O2’s early upgrade scheme are nowhere to be seen. And it’s starting to thoroughly pee me and some other people off. It’s not like this has come as a surprise to the networks, they must have known about the impending announcement probably long before anyone else did. So all the information their customers need should have been ready to go the second Steve Jobs stopped talking.
If you look on the twitter feeds for some of the UK networks HERE and HERE its just full of people asking the same question that should have been answered on Monday night “how much will it cost” or in O2’s case “will I be able to upgrade and how much will it cost” and its getting ridiculous. The only reason I can think of why not one of the networks has come forward and revealed their pricing is they don’t want to be first and risk the other 3 undercutting them. Now that is fair enough but they need to realise that keeping their current and potential customers in the dark is going to thoroughly pee them off possibly to the point where they will just go to the first network to announce the prices even if the others are slightly cheaper.
Last year O2 made a right mess of the 3GS launch by refusing to listen to their customers and not allowing any kind of upgrade path without paying unlawful penalty charges, buying the device at full cost on PAYG or taking out additional contracts. This was responsible for the #o2fail tag to appear on twitter and it has had one or two mentions again this year as has my hashtag #tellushowmuchnow (which hasn’t taken off as yet). This year 4 networks are bustling for our custom but are making an even bigger pigs ear of things by keeping (potential) customers in the dark and not giving people the information they need. Who knows, perhaps by the time iPhone 5 is announced we might know how much iPhone 4 is going to cost!