I’m not a big gadget person, but I do like an elegant solution to information challenges. A lot of people in my Phoenix tech community have iPhones while I have a regular cell phone with a QWERTY keyboard for texting. Almost a year ago, I bought an iPod Touch, which is basically the iPhone without the phone and camera. With it, I have access to the same great pool of applications. And I love it.
Over the last few months, I’ve been reconsidering all of my communication strategies. I’ve considered dropping my cable internet for a cell phone hot spot. I’ve considered cutting my land line. I’ve even considered switching to a smart phone. While I haven’t sorted out the details for my communications strategy, have done some of the hard research.
Recently, I tweeted about my findings on the cost of an iPhone and it’s 2-year contract because I was shocked about the total price. I received a few comments and inquiries from people, so I’m writing this blog post to map out my calculations and give you all a basis for comparison.
What Does The iPhone Cost?
In the following chart, I’m comparing the cost of the iPhone with a new carrier against upgrading my phone but staying with my existing plan. It’s an apple to oranges comparison (yes, I meant to say that) because it is the real life budget choice I face.
Cost Component iPhone 3G LG EnV Touch Carrier: ATT Verizon Phone purchase $199 $49 Apple Care 99 0 Monthly: Talk plan 99 (unlim) 39 (450 mins) Data plan 30 0 Text messaging 20 (unlim) 20 (5,000) Extended warranty 0 2 Total initial purchase: $298 $ 49 Monthly fees (-taxes, etc) 149 61 Total 24 months service: $3,8874 $1,513 Savings: $2,361 over 2 years
I realize that comparing my non-smart phone purchase with an iPhone doesn’t really show the value of the iPhone against a comparable phone with a different provider. Based on the information I’ve provided here, you can do your own phone comparison.
My Cell Phone Decision
I think the iPhone would be a fun gadget to own, and I do see how it could change the communication strategy for my business, especially when I’m mobile. However, I’m staying with my current phone configuration for a while longer based on these facts.
- I spent most of my working day in my home office, so while the mobile aspect would be nice, it isn’t essential.
- I can have mobile internet access using my laptop in a wifi hotspot. Even if I occasionally paid for the hotpot use, I would still have money in the bank.
- I can use my iPod Touch at wifi hotspots to have access to all of the same great iPhone apps.
I do believe that owning an iPhone would be fun and useful. I’m sure that once I got used to having that sort of access with those apps, I would soon become hooked on it. I tend to be frugal with my business expenses, basing my decisions on facts and strategies, not on fun. Based on these facts, there will not be an iPhone in my immediate future, even if it comes to Verizon.