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The Apple iphone .. an Indian perspective.. RRS feed

  • Question

  • There has been a lot of ga-ga and drooling over the latest gadget from Apple  - especially by the Indian media . Channels like NDTV and others who feature a tech show on their channel have heralded this as the gadget of the year ...not so fast pls ...

    I have a few reservations -

    1. Expected time of arrival (ETA) in India - nobody has a good idea .

    2. Price - 500$ or so for the 4GB model if I am right . There is a tendency to convert this fig to rupees and expect the item to be priced accordingly but the fact is that the pricing is dependent on the market situation and there is no fixed price across the globe - so don't be surprised if you have to pay up a few more quid than expected .

     
    3. Music yes ? Phone ? er no ... - this is apple trying its hand at a phone for the  first time . We know they make great PCs and great ipods among other things but this is a new venture and a big step too . They are making a phone for the first time yet they will go further and make it a convergent device as well .. I have some doubts as to whether Apple really can make a good phone which is what the basis should be for a convergent device . A good phone with all the goodies makes a good convergent device . Whats the use if it works like a charm  in all other aspects but it is hopeless as a phone ? No good ...

     

    4. Lack of EDGE support - EDGE and 3G are yet to take off in India but the TRAI is making positive noises about allocating bandwidth to operators . Definitely this is an emerging protocol and must be exploited in the near future . We have Nokia and Sony Ericsson - two of the major phone manufacturers in India who are offering EDGE/3G on many no of models . In Europe and America - likely to be the primary markets for Apple - this technology is almost in daily use . So why does Apple include all the goodies and leave this out ? Surely many ppl will be complaining about this .

     

    Rumour is that an EDGE version will be released soon but who will be willing to invest again just to  upgrade to a EDGE version later on after buying a phone now ..ppl would rather wait and this has a negative feedback on the sales when the product is launched . Sales are likely to be very slow initially till the EDGE version is introduced.

     

    5. Widgets - most of these widgets require that the user is connected to the net 24X7 . In India we can avail this facility through the GPRS and EDGE services provided by our mobile operators. But be warned that these services are notoriously unreliable and painfully slow . Over and above all these points , the no of ppl who subscribe to EDGE/GPRS in India is fractional . So the the main feature in the iphone - widgets - will not be attractive to indian consumers since it requires a net connection on your phone . Cue poor market sales.

     

    Among the many things that have been pointed out as negatives , I feel these are the most outstanding issues - especially in India  . Without being cynical about it , I believe all the hype and hooplah about the iphone being the gadget of the year - as proclaimed by TV and other media entities in India - is a bit premature and maybe also immature ...

    Its the kind of stuff that is made for ppl who say " Have money , will buy .. " and is not practical for daily use to the avg consumer.

     

     

    Wednesday, February 7, 2007 6:47 PM