Of all the gadgets I’ve ever owned, my iPhone has launched the most conversations with people I meet in airports and on airplanes. (Those being the most likely places I’d use it where people I don’t know would notice and not hesitate to ask.) My iPhone starts more conversations than even my MacBook Air — which may be confusing to people because I’ve covered the Apple logo with a Hammock “H” sticker. But even after I tell people how great the iPhone is, I always recommend that they delay purchasing one. “Wait until the 3G version comes out and they drop the price,” I say. “Heck, if you can live without it, don’t purchase one until you can use it with any cell phone carrier.”
I doubt the people who really want an iPhone can wait until they are “officially” unlocked, but the 3G and price-drop may be close at hand if the report on Fortune.com proves true.
When the 3G iPhone is introduced this summer, AT&T, the exclusive U.S. iPhone sales partner with Apple, will cut the price by as much as $200, according to a person familiar with the strategy.
Saul Hansel, blogging at NYTimes.com, notes that one aspect of the Fortune report is illogical: that AT&T will only offer the $200-off deal on phones purchased at AT&T Stores, not Apple Stores. I couldn’t agree more with Hansel: there’s no way that part of the story is correct. And if that is from the Fortune’s source, does that not call into question the veracity of anything from the “person familiar with the strategy.”
With that caveat — the Fortune article contains some information that defies logic and all known insight into how Steve Jobs works — if the 3G costs less than $200 for an 8GB model, I will be changing my “friendly advice” from “a wait” into “a buy.”